German Exchange Student Has Special Tie To New Pope - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

04/22/05

German Exchange Student Has Special Tie To New Pope

"You go up in front of a church in front of the bishop. He asked you how you are feeling, if you are excited about your confirmation. He tells you the meanings of your first and middle names," German Exchange Student Corinna Maurath says as she describes her confirmation.

It represents a young person's formal initiation into the church. For German-born Maurath, her conformation was surprisingly unique.

That's because it was performed by a future Pope, German Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger.

"When it happened, I didn't think about it like that. I didn't actually expect him to become Pope or anything. It's kind of weird," Maurath says.

The student, who now lives in Gautier, says she was pleasantly surprised to learn Cardinal Ratzinger was elected to the papacy.

"I didn't know he was that likely to become Pope. I didn't realize that. It has been a long time since the last German pope, I'm kind of excited."

She says, like his predecessor, the man now known as Pope Benedict XVI will likely spend a lot of time traveling.

Maurath hopes one of his travel destinations will be to her hometown back in Germany.

By Jaimee Goad

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