Roman Catholics from across the Diocese of Hallam have said their own farewell to the late Pope Benedict at a Mass for the repose of his soul in the Cathedral Church of St Marie in Sheffield.
The cathedral was full of people, among them local leaders other faiths including the Dean of Sheffield’s Anglican Cathedral, the Rev Canon Abigail Thompson, as the Bishop of Hallam, the Rt Rev Ralph Heskett paid tribute to the Pope Emeritus.
Bishop Ralph said: “I think today we gather here in the Cathedral Church of St Marie, first and foremost to give thanks for a life well-lived.
“At the heart of his ministry for over 70 years was his search for truth. His preaching and his written works are a testimony to this and they guaranteed that he will continue to influence the church in death as he did in life.”
Bishop Ralph recalled his own first meeting with Pope Benedict, when he was Bishop of Gibraltar, before taking over as Bishop of Hallam.
“It was a moment I will always remember and treasure,” he said.
“Away from the crowds and the grand liturgies of the big occasion, I encountered a more gentle, very human person and – it may come as a surprise to some – a man with a sense of humour.”
The Bishop of Hallam, the Rt Rev Ralph Heskett (centre), celebrating Mass for the Repose of the Soul of Pope Benedict XVI at the Cathedral Church of St Marie in Sheffield.
The Bishop of Hallam, the Rt Rev Ralph Heskett (centre), remebering the late Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI at the Cathedral Church of St Marie in Sheffield.