2005: Following the death of Pope John Paul II, Ratzinger is elected as the 265th pope and chooses the pontifical name Pope Benedict XVI.
2005: Pope Benedict XVI celebrates his first canonizations on October 25 in St. Peter’s Square.
2006: By merging four existing pontifical councils into two, Pope Benedict XVI begins his downsizing of the Roman Curia.
2007: Delighting environmental advocacy groups, Pope Benedict XVI announces plans for the Vatican to become the world’s first carbon-neutral country.
2009: Pope Benedict XVI publishes the well-received encyclical Caritas in Veritate, or “Charity in Truth.”
2012: Three years after launching the Vatican’s official YouTube channel, the tech-savvy pontiff joins Twitter with the handle @Pontifex.
2013: Citing failing health and old age, Benedict announces plan to resign the papacy—the first pontiff to do so in 600 years.