Europe

'Modest' 90th birthday party planned for retired pope

  • FILE - In this Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016 filer, Pope Francis, left, talks with Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI in the former Convent Mater Ecclesiae at the Vatican. A "modest" 90th birthday party is being planned for Benedict XVI, who stunned the Catholic church by resigning in 2013. His aide, Monsignor Georg Gaenswein, says Benedict's birthday, which falls on Easter Sunday this year, will be celebrated on Monday in Bavarian style in keeping with the emeritus pontiff's roots. (L'Osservatore Romano/Pool Photo via AP)

    FILE - In this Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016 filer, Pope Francis, left, talks with Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI in the former Convent Mater Ecclesiae at the Vatican. A "modest" 90th birthday party is being planned for Benedict XVI, who stunned the Catholic church by resigning in 2013. His aide, Monsignor Georg Gaenswein, says Benedict's birthday, which falls on Easter Sunday this year, will be celebrated on Monday in Bavarian style in keeping with the emeritus pontiff's roots. (L'Osservatore Romano/Pool Photo via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015 file photo, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, right, hugs Pope Francis in St. Peter's Basilica during the ceremony marking the start of the Holy Year, at the Vatican. A "modest" 90th birthday party is being planned for Benedict XVI, who stunned the Catholic church by resigning in 2013. His aide, Monsignor Georg Gaenswein, says Benedict's birthday, which falls on Easter Sunday this year, will be celebrated on Monday in Bavarian style in keeping with the emeritus pontiff's roots. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia, File)

    FILE - In this Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015 file photo, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, right, hugs Pope Francis in St. Peter's Basilica during the ceremony marking the start of the Holy Year, at the Vatican. A "modest" 90th birthday party is being planned for Benedict XVI, who stunned the Catholic church by resigning in 2013. His aide, Monsignor Georg Gaenswein, says Benedict's birthday, which falls on Easter Sunday this year, will be celebrated on Monday in Bavarian style in keeping with the emeritus pontiff's roots. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015. filer, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI attends a Mass prior to the opening of the Holy Door of St. Peter's Basilica, formally starting the Jubilee of Mercy, at the Vatican. A "modest" 90th birthday party is being planned for Benedict XVI, who stunned the Catholic church by resigning in 2013. His aide, Monsignor Georg Gaenswein, says Benedict's birthday, which falls on Easter Sunday this year, will be celebrated on Monday in Bavarian style in keeping with the emeritus pontiff's roots. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia, File)

    FILE - In this Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015. filer, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI attends a Mass prior to the opening of the Holy Door of St. Peter's Basilica, formally starting the Jubilee of Mercy, at the Vatican. A "modest" 90th birthday party is being planned for Benedict XVI, who stunned the Catholic church by resigning in 2013. His aide, Monsignor Georg Gaenswein, says Benedict's birthday, which falls on Easter Sunday this year, will be celebrated on Monday in Bavarian style in keeping with the emeritus pontiff's roots. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia, File)  (The Associated Press)

A "modest" 90th birthday party is being planned for Benedict XVI, who stunned the Catholic Church by resigning as pope in 2013.

His aide, Monsignor Georg Gaenswein, says Benedict's birthday, which falls on Easter Sunday this year, will be celebrated on Monday in Bavarian style in keeping with the emeritus pontiff's roots.

Gaenswein told the Catholic news agency S.I.R. on Saturday there'll be a "modest party" in keeping with his strength. He noted that Benedict is very lucid and in good humor. Benedict is frail, though he still takes his daily stroll using a walker.

Joseph Ratzinger was born on April 16, 1927 in southern Germany. Trained as a theologian, he was a long-time Vatican official in charge of ensuring doctrinal orthodoxy when elected pontiff in 2005.