PORTLAND — An online conversation on Monday, March 27, discussing the impact of Pope Benedict XVI on the life of the Church will feature someone who knew him well.

Saint Joseph’s College of Maine’s Center for Faith and Spirituality is hosting the event with Bishop Robert Deeley via Google Meet at 7 p.m. All are welcome to join the conversation by registering for the free online gathering at  https://forms.gle/PwwB5WWApvjN5NhS6.

Bishop Deeley worked with Pope Benedict XVI, then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in Vatican City nearly 20 years ago. Pope Benedict XVI was the first pope to voluntarily give up the pontifical reins in nearly 600 years and spent his twilight years living in the Vatican gardens in a refurbished monastery, rarely appearing in public with the man who succeeded him, Pope Francis. Throughout his life and service, Benedict was known for being a dominant intellectual figure who promoted and enforced Church doctrine.

“The passing of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI was a great sadness for the universal Church and a personal loss for me and countless others who benefited from his great faith, intelligence, and kindness,” said Bishop Deeley. “He knew that faith is entrusting oneself to Jesus and being conformed to his very life of love, and to believe is to enter into that love. Pope Benedict taught that holiness was charity lived to the full and that being a Christian ‘is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction.’”

For more information about the online event on March 27, call 207-893-7705 or email cfuller@sjcme.edu.