AP PHOTOS: A look back at Pope Benedict XVI

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  • FILE - In this Sunday, March 25, 2012 file photo, Pope Benedict XVI waves from the popemobile wearing a Mexican sombrero as he arrives to give a Mass in Bicentennial Park near Silao, Mexico. Pope Benedict XVI announced Monday, Feb. 11, 2013, he would resign Feb. 28 because he is simply too old to carry on. (AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo, File)

  • FILE - In this Friday, March 23, 2012 file photo, Mexico's President Felipe Calderon, left, looks on as Pope Benedict XVI is greeted by children at the airport in Silao, Mexico, his first to the country. Pope Benedict XVI announced Monday, Feb. 11, 2013, he would resign Feb. 28 because he is simply too old to carry on. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia, File)

  • FILE - In this Sunday, March 22, 2009 file photo, Pope Benedict XVI arrives in the popemobile to celebrate a Mass on the outskirts of Angola's seaside capital, Luanda, the last major event before the end of the visit on the following day. Pope Benedict XVI announced Monday, Feb. 11, 2013, he would resign Feb. 28 because he is simply too old to carry on. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini, File)

  • FILE - In this April 9, 2009 file photo, Pope Benedict XVI offers a nun the Holy Communion, a Chrism Mass inside St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican, as Benedict XVI celebrated a Holy Thursday Mass that included the traditional blessing of holy oils - some of which the church will send to an earthquake zone as a sign of closeness to the stricken population. Pope Benedict XVI announced Monday, Feb. 11, 2013, he would resign Feb. 28 because he is simply too old to carry on. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini, File)

  • FILE - In this Friday, Sept. 12, 2008 file photo, Pope Benedict XVI waves to wellwishers as he leaves the Notre-Dame cathedral in Paris, following a vespers service. Pope Benedict XVI announced Monday, Feb. 11, 2013, he would resign Feb. 28 because he is simply too old to carry on. (AP Photo/Philippe Wojazer, Pool, File)

  • In this photo provided by the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, Pope Benedict XVI, center, leaves after attending a meeting of Vatican cardinals where he read a document in Latin in which he announced his resignation, at the Vatican, Monday, Feb. 11, 2013. Benedict XVI announced Monday that he would resign Feb. 28 - the first pontiff to do so in nearly 600 years. The decision sets the stage for a conclave to elect a new pope before the end of March. (AP Photo/L'Osservatore Romano, ho)

  • In this photo provided by the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, Pope Benedict XVI delivers his blessing at the end of a meeting of Vatican cardinals, at the Vatican, Monday, Feb. 11, 2013. Benedict XVI announced Monday that he would resign Feb. 28 - the first pontiff to do so in nearly 600 years. The decision sets the stage for a conclave to elect a new pope before the end of March. (AP Photo/L'Osservatore Romano, ho)

  • In this photo provided by the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, Pope Benedict XVI delivers his message at the end of a meeting of Vatican cardinals, at the Vatican, Monday, Feb. 11, 2013. Benedict XVI announced Monday that he would resign Feb. 28 - the first pontiff to do so in nearly 600 years. The decision sets the stage for a conclave to elect a new pope before the end of March. (AP Photo/L'Osservatore Romano, ho)

  • In this photo provided by the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, Pope Benedict XVI reads a document in Latin where he announces his resignation, during a meeting of Vatican cardinals, at the Vatican, Monday, Feb. 11, 2013. Benedict XVI announced Monday that he would resign Feb. 28 - the first pontiff to do so in nearly 600 years. The decision sets the stage for a conclave to elect a new pope before the end of March. (AP Photo/L'Osservatore Romano, ho)

  • In this photo provided by the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, Pope Benedict XVI, right, and Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Dean of the College of Cardinals, hug each other after the pontiff announced during the meeting of Vatican cardinals that he would resign on Feb. 28, at the Vatican, Monday, Feb. 11, 2013. Benedict XVI announced Monday that he would resign Feb. 28 - the first pontiff to do so in nearly 600 years. The decision sets the stage for a conclave to elect a new pope before the end of March. (AP Photo/L'Osservatore Romano, ho)

  • FILE - In this Thursday, March 25, 2010 file photo Pope Benedict XVI gestures from his popemobile as he leaves a youth gathering, in St. Peter's square, at the Vatican. When he became pope at age 78, Benedict XVI was already the oldest pontiff elected in nearly 300 years. He's now 85, and in recent years he has slowed down significantly, cutting back his foreign travel and limiting his audiences. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)

  • RECROP OF VAT114 - In this photo provided by the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, Mons. Franco Comaldo, a pope aide, left, looks at Pope Benedict XVI as he reads a document in Latin where he announces his resignation, during a meeting of Vatican cardinals, at the Vatican, Monday, Feb. 11, 2013. Benedict XVI announced Monday that he would resign Feb. 28 - the first pontiff to do so in nearly 600 years. The decision sets the stage for a conclave to elect a new pope before the end of March. (AP Photo/L'Osservatore Romano, ho)

  • In this photo provided by the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Dean of the College of Cardinals, center, talks to other cardinals after Pope Benedict XVI, not pictured, announced his resignation during a meeting with the cardinals, at the Vatican, Monday, Feb. 11, 2013. Benedict XVI announced Monday that he would resign Feb. 28 - the first pontiff to do so in nearly 600 years. The decision sets the stage for a conclave to elect a new pope before the end of March. (AP Photo/L'Osservatore Romano, ho)

  • Associated Press file photo

    This April 19, 2005, file photo shows Pope Benedict XVI greeting the crowd from the central balcony of St. Peter's Basilica moments after being elected, at the Vatican. On Monday, Benedict XVI announced he would resign Feb. 28, the first pontiff to do so in nearly 600 years. The decision sets the stage for a conclave to elect a new pope before the end of March.

  • In this photo provided by the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, Pope Benedict XVI reads a document in Latin where he announces his resignation, during a meeting of Vatican cardinals, at the Vatican, Monday, Feb. 11, 2013. Benedict XVI announced Monday that he would resign Feb. 28 - the first pontiff to do so in nearly 600 years. The decision sets the stage for a conclave to elect a new pope before the end of March. (AP Photo/L'Osservatore Romano, ho)

  • Associated Press file photo

    In this 1979 file photo, Pope John Paul II, left, poses with Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger of Munich, who was named on Nov. 25, 1981, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and President of the Pontifical Biblical Commission and of the International Theological Commission, the former Holy Office. Ratzinger was elected pope April 19, 2005, and chose Benedict XVI as his papal name.