Tom Benson shows off his Super Bowl ring to Pope Benedict XVI

Tom Benson checked out the ring of Pope Benedict XVI and then the owner of the New Orleans Saints showed the leader of the Catholic world his own ring.


Bruce Nolan of the New Orleans Times-Picayune details how Benson and his wife Gayle, while traveling through Italy and Germany, stopped off at the Vatican on the Wednesday of Holy Week. An archbishop from New Orleans had written the Vatican and requested a brief papal introduction for the Bensons, who have reportedly donated millions to Catholic charities and education over the years.

And the visit happened, with photos of Benedict checking out the 2009 Super Bowl ring Benson was wearing.

“I said to him I'd like to show you my ring,” Benson said with his wife beside him. “I told him what it was, you know? It's a Super Bowl ring. And he understood that, right, darling?”
Benson cracked himself up as he recalled the visit.

“There's this cardinal laughing too. He couldn't believe I would do that. So it was a nice conversation. And he was very sincere about this whole thing.”

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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