Monday, February 11, 2013

Can a Pope Resign?

I was completely stunned this morning when I checked in to Twitter this morning to find lots of my reputable, Catholic friends posting about the Holy Father resigning.  It took a few seconds to register those words, and connect the Office of the papacy with the word "resignation".   They don't naturally go together!  The next thing I did was confirm that it was still February and not April 1.  Surprisingly, my husband who was getting into his car, had not heard the news.

Alas, it seems to be true.  God bless the poor man who wanted nothing more than to retire to his home in Germany before he was ever elected!  But John Paul II wouldn't hear of it; he knew that Joseph Ratzinger still had important work to do.

I am so sad that his health has deteriorated to the point that he can no longer complete his ministry.

I am grateful for the 8 years of wonderful service that he has given as Pope.

I will be praying for him very much over the next few weeks, offering my Lenten sacrifices for him.  I can't imagine what needs to be done for a pope to wrap things up, and get them ready to hand over to his successor!   When I said that first Our Father in my rosary, this morning, "for the Holy Father and his intentions," it brought tears to my eyes as it carried a new intensity!

I wonder why he didn't resign, effective immediately, since that is what would happen if he died.  The really sad thing about that is that we will have to listen to a few extra weeks of speculation by the heartless MSM while we await the results of the conclave.

It is so sad to lose a beloved Pope.  Maybe moreso to lose him in this way, since he hasn't gone on to his eternal reward, but to a retirement as the ex-Pope.

There is still hope, though.  A new Holy Father will be elected through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and the Church will continue her long battle against evil.  I have no complaints with Benedict XVI and his papacy, but I know that a fresh outlook, a different way of doing things,  and a younger man can be a good thing for everyone.

V. Let us pray for Benedict, our Pope.
R. May the Lord preserve him, and give him life, and make 
him blessed upon the earth, and deliver him not up to the 
will of his enemies. [Ps 40:3]

Our Father,  Hail Mary.
O God, Shepherd and Ruler of all Thy faithful people, look 
mercifully upon Thy servant Benedict, whom Thou hast chosen 
as shepherd to preside over Thy Church. Grant him, we 
beseech Thee, that by his word and example, he may edify 
those over whom he hath charge, so that together with the 
flock committed to him, may he attain everlasting life. 
Through Christ our Lord. Amen.


  1. My heart is so heavy today. I fell asleep this afternoon, and when I woke, surprised that I had fallen asleep, I remembered that the disciples slept outside of Gethsemane and it is said that they slept, not because they were lazy or bored, but because of their sorrow. My legs feel leaden. I know one man does not make the church but he was the kind of leader who gave hope.

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