Pope Benedict XVI salutes Catholic faithfuls.Corbis

On April 19, 2005 Cardinal Ratzinger was elected the 265th pope at age 78. He chooses the name Benedict XVI. He succeeded Pope John Paul II, who died on April 2, 2005.

Benedict XVI, 85, was known for his relatively conservative theology.

President Barack Obama meets Pope Benedict XVI.Corbis

On July 10, 2009 Pope Benedict XVI meets with President Obama in an official visit at the Vatican. During his reign, Pope Benedict had urged President Obama to reduce abortions in the United States.

Pope Benedict XVI is portrayed in a chalk drawing by a street artist in Roncalliplatz, in front of the Cathedral of Cologne.Corbis

In August 2005, Benedict XVI visits Germany for the first time since his election to celebrate World Youth Day in Cologne.

"In vast areas of the world today, there is a strange forgetfulness of God," he told 1 million young people gathered for the event. "It seems as if everything would be just the same even without Him."

Pope Benedict XVI visits the Blue Mosque in Istanbul.Corbis

On Nov. 30, 2006 Pope Benedict XVI visits the Blue Mosque in Istanbul, becoming only the second pope in history known to visit a Mosque.

During this visit he also meets with Orthodox Christian leaders as part of an effort to heal a centuries-old clash with the Eastern Orthodox church.

Pope Benedict XVI in robes.Corbis

Pope Benedict XVI is seen attending his general weekly audience in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican on Oct. 10 2012.

Later that year, in March, the pope would begin using a cane to move around.

Pope Benedict XVI leads a Holy Mass at the Vatican.Corbis

Pope Benedict XVI leads a Holy Mass on Dec. 24, 2012 to celebrate the Solemnity of the Lord's Birth in St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican.

Earlier that month, he had invited the world to ask him questions via his new, personal Twitter account, @pontifex.

Pope Benedict XVI celebrates a mass.Corbis

Pope Benedict XVI celebrates a mass on Jan. 6, 2013, the occasion of Epiphany in St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican. Just over a month later, he would announce his resignation.