Confirming a German media report, Seewald told agency KNA that Benedict XVI had not wanted to “make a fuss about the closer circumstances of his resignation, which was justified by his exhaustion,” while still alive.
Since the rumors and speculations about Benedict’s resignation have not died down, Seewald said he was obliged “to publish the decisive detail entrusted to me about the medical history of the German pope.”
The biographer said that Benedict XVI had used strong sleeping pills.
On his trip to Mexico and Cuba in March 2012, Benedict told Seewald, he realized he must have “bumped into something in the bathroom and fallen” after waking up only to discover his handkerchief was “blood-soaked.”
After seeking medical attention, Benedict was able to continue his program. However, following the incident, the pope’s personal physician ordered Benedict to reduce his intake of sleeping pills and stressed that he should only attend public appointments in the morning when traveling abroad.
On this account, Benedict reasoned he should make way for a new pope who would be able to attend World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro in 2013.
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