Friday, March 31, 2006

Pope Benedict XVI's Birthplace Goes on Sale

ORIGINAL POST Aug. 10, 2005

It looks like the birthplace of Pope Benedict XVI has become an attraction place for tourists. His birthplace house is getting a lot of attention from pilgrims. So, the current owner of house has decided to sell it. Bloomberg Media reported:

Aug. 8 (Bloomberg) -- The Bavarian village of Marktl am Inn, the birthplace of Pope Benedict XVI, has never witnessed so much bustle. Since Joseph Ratzinger was elected in April, more than 30,000 tourists have passed through.

Visitors can buy Pope Benedict candles, Pope incense, Pope key rings, Pope medallions, Pope cakes, Pope sausage and Pope beer. They can't -- at least not yet -- enter the house where Ratzinger was born, which is the private residence of Claudia Dandl, a 39- year-old single mother of two and a physiotherapist.

That may change soon. Dandl, fed up with the camera flashes and noise outside her front door, has put her home on the market. A condition of the sale is that it must be opened to the public, possibly as a museum to celebrate the life and work of Ratzinger, who was two years old when his family left Marktl.

``This cannot be a residence any more,'' Karin Friedlmaier, the real-estate agent managing the sale, said in an interview at her Munich office. ``You just feel that if you are living there, people want to come in.''


I hope the city can buy it and convert it into a museum. We'll see.

UPDATE Aug. 31, 2005
The place has been sold to three German dioceses:

Three Catholic dioceses in Germany were reported to have purchased the two-storey house where Pope Benedict XVI was born Apr 16, 1927.

The newspaper Die Welt, in a report Wednesday, said bids for the house, which has been rezoned for use as a museum, had ranged from 3 million to 5 million euros ($4 million to $6 million). The final price was undisclosed.

It named the purchasers as the Munich archdiocese and the Regensburg and Passau dioceses. Tenders for the sale closed Monday.


I'm glad the place wasn't sold to some online casino or other investors. At least, the money made from the museum will go to the Catholic church itself.

UPDATE Mar. 31, 2006
The house will be open to the public very soon as reported by The Associated Press:

MUNICH, Germany -- The Roman Catholic Church said Friday it has taken possession of the house where Pope Benedict XVI was born and will open it to the public.
The church beat out scores of bidders, including a Saudi sheik, who offered to buy the house from the former owner...


Why would a Saudi sheik want to buy the house?

UPDATE Apr. 01, 2006
It's a good week for the Catholic church. Here's why:

A Polish businessman has bought the former family home of Pope John Paul II and donated it to the Catholic Church.

The Church had wanted to buy the 19th Century property but had been unable to afford the hefty price tag.
Ryszard Krauze, the 49-year-old owner of one of Poland's biggest computer software firms and one of the country's richest businessmen, bought the house for an undisclosed price and handed it over to the Church.


That's so cool.


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