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.
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]
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.