Filling the red slippers of the late Pope John Paul II would seem to have been a difficult if not impossible task for the former Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger of Germany. The Polish pope had been widely revered for his personal charisma; credited with helping bring down Communism in Europe and with forging ecumenical alliances with the world’s other great religions; and put on the fast-track to canonization upon his death. But Benedict succeeded in forging a unique legacy by playing to his own strengths, not competing with those of his predecessor. Having been John Paul II’s ideological enforcer and guardian of Catholic orthodoxy for two decades, Benedict continued to use his intellectual rigor “to insist on the otherworldliness of religious faith and its imperviousness to changes in society,” as Andrew Sullivan wrote of him in TIME in 2005, days before Cardinal Ratzinger ascended the papal throne.
- How Do You Take Over for a Legend?
- Tim Cook / Steve Jobs
- Joe Girardi / Joe Torre
- Coco Chanel / Karl Lagerfeld
- Bob Paisley / Bill Shankly
- Sammy Hagar / David Lee Roth
- Gene Bartow / John Wooden
- Jay Leno / Johnny Carson
- Tim Floyd / Phil Jackson
- Lyndon B. Johnson / John F. Kennedy, Jr.
- Drew Carey / Bob Barker
- Ben Bernanke / Alan Greenspan
- George Seifert / Bill Walsh
- Jennifer Lopez / Simon Cowell
- Pope Benedict XVI / Pope John Paul II