Pope Benedict
Pope Benedict XVI is currently living in the Vatican. Reuters

In the company of visitors from his native Germany and his brother, former pope Benedict XVI celebrated his 90th birthday with a mug of beer, and according to AP News, a gift basket whose goodies included pretzels, both considered staples of Bavarian cuisine.

The Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano published photos of the celebration with Benedict sipping a beer. He was born on April 16, 1927, but because the day coincided this year with Easter Sunday, Benedict was feted on Monday, April 17.

From left, Bavarian Prime Minister Horst Seehofer, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI and his brother Georg sit on the occasion of a party for Benedict's 90th birthday, at the Vatican Monday, April 17, 2017. Photo: L'Osservatore Romano/Pool Photo via AP

This is not the first time that the pontiff retired, celebrating his birthday enjoying a beer. It is possible to see how in previous years it does the same as if it were a German tradition.

The emeritus pope is currently living in a former monastery within the Vatican, called the Mater Ecclesiae. Recently Pope Francis visited his predecessor to wish him a happy birthday, while at the same time the Vatican stamp and coin office also celebrated the pope emeritus’s birthday with the release of stamps.

Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger chose the pontifical name Benedict, which comes from the Latin word meaning "the blessed", in honour of both Pope Benedict XV, who passionately pursued peace during the First World War, and Saint Benedict of Nursia.

At the age of 85 years, he was the fourth-oldest person to hold the office of pope. On 11 February 2013, the Vatican confirmed that he would resign the papacy, as a result of his advanced age, becoming the first pope to resign since 1415.

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