Former Pope Benedict XVI dies at 95

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, a dignitary and religious leader, has passed away.

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI died on Saturday at the age of 95.

Benedict, who was the first pontiff to resign from his position in nearly 600 years, according to the Vatican.

"With sadness I inform you that Pope Emeritus, Benedict XVI passed away this morning at 9:34 a.m. at the Mater Ecclesia monastery in the Vatican," Matteo Bruni, director of the Pontifical Press Office, reported.

Vatican News reported on Saturday that the former pope's body will be placed in St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican from Monday for the faithful to pay their last respects and pay their last respects.

Pope Francis called him a "great man" in his first public remarks since the death of former Pope Benedict XVI.

Pope Benedict XVI's health had been declining for some time.

Benedict stunned the Catholic faithful and theological experts around the world with his announcement on February 11, 2013, that he was stepping down in recognition of his advanced age.