Smart SpendingSmart Spending

Pope Benedict's pension plan

How much will the first pope to retire from the job in nearly 600 years collect each month?

By MSN Money Partner Feb 20, 2013 3:23PM

This post comes from Matthew Heimer at partner site MarketWatch.


MarketWatch logoWhat kind of retirement package do you give to someone who's spent 60-plus years on the job, including almost eight as chief executive? If you're the Roman Catholic Church, and that someone is Pope Benedict XVI (the once and future Joseph Ratzinger), you give him a monthly pension worth 2,500 euros, or about $3,340.


Pope Benedict XVI on February 13, 2013 (© ZUMA/Rex Features)The Italian newspaper La Stampa broke the story this week, reporting that the 85-year-old Benedict -- the first pope in nearly 600 years to retire from office -- will receive the pension that the church typically offers to retired bishops. (Don't speak Italian? Neither do I: Britain's Independent has the story here.)


Coincidentally, the pope's pension is almost identical to the maximum Social Security benefit a U.S. retiree could earn if she retired this year -- $3,350 a month, according to the Social Security Administration's benefits calculator. To receive a check that size, that hypothetical retiree would need to retire at age 70 or later after having earned the taxable maximum salary throughout her career -- the equivalent of $113,700 this year.


Of course, most of Benedict's personal expenses, from food to gardening, will be covered by the Vatican for the rest of his life, so his pension is mostly play money. (Alas: no grandkids to visit.)


The pot could get sweeter, too, according to La Stampa: If Benedict's successor awards him the status of emeritus cardinal -- not out of the question, since Ratzinger held various cardinal titles before being elected pope -- his pension could double.


More on MarketWatch and MSN Money:

Feb 20, 2013 5:38PM
Hey Bob1313, Let he is without sin cast the first stone! Vengeance is mine saith the Lord!
Feb 20, 2013 5:33PM
please help me find me a girl friend
Feb 20, 2013 5:24PM
My social insecurity has gone up through COLA $17 in eleven years. The Pope is getting a much better exaltation even with corruption.
Feb 20, 2013 5:19PM

Damn, he could probably buy a souped-up Ex-Popemobile for that!  Go ex-pope!


Feb 20, 2013 5:18PM
Any one else that old was left out of  the first post.
Feb 20, 2013 5:16PM
Chances are that the Pope or anyone else will not be a drag on any pension plan for very long.
Feb 20, 2013 5:15PM

From a what

It's a big job and he deserves it.

Feb 20, 2013 5:11PM
What's the taxable value on an eternity in paradise seated at the right hand of the father?
Feb 20, 2013 5:01PM
I`m going to try for the job.I`m not catholic or do I speak latin, but there`s a first for everything.
Feb 20, 2013 4:49PM
maybe he'll donate the money to poor people around the world who are asked to donate to the collection plate on sunday.  wouldn't it be great if his last decree were to allow priests to marry.  it would solve the priest shortage, almost eliminate child abuse in the church or of vulnerable women, boost attendance which would bring in more money, and maybe he'll even let women be priests.   I'm guessing growing up his mom Mary consuled him on behavior, faith, etc. and I'm sure Mary Magdaline also got a few words in edge wise.  Interesting that the two important women in his life were named Mary, so I guess confiding in women isn't all that bad, even on spiritual matters. I'm just saying....!
Feb 20, 2013 4:48PM
I do believe that the "we" of the world are more interested in his pension and benefits than he is.  And, it appears that there are still some who care more about revenge and passing judgment than offering up a mere passing comment.  BTW.  Have "you" people paid your share of restitution to those black americans who descended from slaves?  No?  Shame on you.  Seems you have nothing over on the Pope.
Feb 20, 2013 4:36PM
Will he still be able to ride in the Popemobile?
Feb 20, 2013 4:35PM
Peanuts compared to what a one term congressman recieves for nothing
Feb 20, 2013 4:32PM
I would love to know how much of a pension nun's receive from the Catholic church? I'm sure it is the same as priests.  
Feb 20, 2013 4:28PM
He deserves jail time, not a pension.  Also, since he took a vow of poverty, then he should not get anything for the rest of his life, which should be very, very short.
Feb 20, 2013 4:26PM
Does anyone really care.  He will be well taken care of and that's about all anyone needs to know, except for, maybe, people who want to try to sell him a variable annuity.
Please help us to maintain a healthy and vibrant community by reporting any illegal or inappropriate behavior. If you believe a message violates theCode of Conductplease use this form to notify the moderators. They will investigate your report and take appropriate action. If necessary, they report all illegal activity to the proper authorities.
100 character limit
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?


Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.


Smart Spending brings you the best money-saving tips from MSN Money and the rest of the Web. Join the conversation on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.