Pope Benedict XVI through the years
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Joseph Ratzinger, who would later become Pope Benedict XVI, grew up in Germany as the Nazi regime was gaining power. He entered the seminary in 1939, the same year he was required to join the Hitler Youth. Ratzinger was drafted into the anti-aircraft corps while still in the seminary (pictured in 1943). He was held in a prisoner of war camp but released after a few months later. Prior to being elected pope in 2005, he had served as the Church’s chief doctrinal watchdog during Pope John Paul II’s papacy. Pope Benedict resigned in 2013, becoming the first Pope to step down in nearly 600 years.