Rorate Caeli

Benedict XVI responds: "No, I am not abandoning you!"

Dear brothers and sisters!

On the second Sunday of Lent, the liturgy always presents us with the Gospel of the Transfiguration of the Lord. The evangelist Luke places particular emphasis on the fact that Jesus was transfigured as he prayed: his is a profound experience of relationship with the Father during a sort of spiritual retreat that Jesus lives on a high mountain in the company of Peter, James and John , the three disciples always present in moments of divine manifestation of the Master (Luke 5:10, 8.51, 9.28).The Lord, who shortly before had foretold his death and resurrection (9:22), offers his disciples a foretaste of his glory. And even in the Transfiguration, as in baptism, we hear the voice of the Heavenly Father, "This is my Son, the Chosen One listen to him" (9:35). The presence of Moses and Elijah, representing the Law and the Prophets of the Old Covenant, it is highly significant: the whole history of the Alliance is focused on Him, the Christ, who accomplishes a new "exodus" (9:31) , not to the promised land as in the time of Moses, but to Heaven. Peter’s words: "Master, it is good that we are here" (9.33) represents the impossible attempt to stop this mystical experience. St. Augustine says: "[Peter] ... on the mountain ... had Christ as the food of the soul. Why should he come down to return to the labours and pains, while up there he was full of feelings of holy love for God that inspired in him a holy conduct? "(Sermon 78.3).

We can draw a very important lesson from meditating on this passage of the Gospel. First, the primacy of prayer, without which all the work of the apostolate and of charity is reduced to activism. In Lent we learn to give proper time to prayer, both personal and communal, which gives breath to our spiritual life. In addition, to pray is not to isolate oneself from the world and its contradictions, as Peter wanted on Tabor, instead prayer leads us back to the path, to action. "The Christian life - I wrote in my Message for Lent - consists in continuously scaling the mountain to meet God and then coming back down, bearing the love and strength drawn from him, so as to serve our brothers and sisters with God’s own love "(n. 3).

Dear brothers and sisters, I feel that this Word of God is particularly directed at me, at this point in my life. The Lord is calling me to "climb the mountain", to devote myself even more to prayer and meditation. But this does not mean abandoning the Church, indeed, if God is asking me to do this it is so that I can continue to serve the Church with the same dedication and the same love with which I have done thus far, but in a way that is better suited to my age and my strength. Let us invoke the intercession of the Virgin Mary: may she always help us all to follow the Lord Jesus in prayer and works of charity.
Benedict XVI
February 23, 2013
[Transl.: Radio Vaticana]


LeonG said...

Honestly, this came across to me as a self-justification by someone who is experiencing emphatic sentiments of culpability. He would have been better advised to leave well alone this particular issue since it is a current hornets nest of controversy. He only stirs the nest even further by it.

He ought to just abdicate and leave it at that.

Prof. Basto said...

In the wake of the Second Vatican Council we witnessed the Chances to the Church's laws that created the novelty of Bishops Emeritus.

We also witnessed the Cardinals older than 80 years old be deprived of the right of participation in the Conclave. They could simply have been released of the obligation to attend, but no, the law of the Church was changed to prohibit them from taking any part in the election of the Roman Pontiff. This was the first change in the body of electors in several centuries (since the full College of Cardinals was recognized as the electors of the Pope), and as a result the full College is no longer the electoral body, but only the part of the College that is younger than 80 years old at the beggining of the Vacant See.

And now, with his resignation and with remarks such as those made in today's Angelus, the Pope is institutionalizing in the Church the figure of the Pope emeritus.

We will have the governing Pope, and the praying Pope emeritus.

It escapes me how this is not an invitation for the resignation of future Popes, when they too, feel exausted and lacking in strenght.

Instead of the Pope making clear that with this act he does not wish to constrain his successors, or to create any sort of precedent, the Pope said in his February 11th that in today's world energies of mind and body are a necessary condition for the discharge of the petrine ministry.

Is this not a subtle change, but a change nonetheless, to the operation of the Roman Pontificate, and a change that is taking place due to the need to adapt to the circumnstances of the modern age?

So the model of Popes for life was good for the entire history of the Church, but it is not good for the modern times?

I do not doubt that the Pope thinks his decision is the right thing to do. I do not doubt that he will live in prayer.

But this resignation is a huge mistake, and, by changing subtly the functioning of the Roman Pontificate, it does damage to the Holy Church of God.

Joe said...

Prudence would forbid the Holy Father to reveal the most particular reasons for his abdication, and his most particular plans and hopes for assisting with (and invoking divine assistance with) the transition to his successor. Whether he has "abandoned" the Church, materially speaking, will be much more evident when we can look back and see such particulars ourselves.

Benedict Carter said...

I wrote a piece for the previous thread but am glad now that it didn't make it through the Rorate Caeli filter.

He's convinced that what he is doing is right. I sway between condemning him and thinking, "Well, the ways of God are inscrutable, come what may Christ is with His Church" and leaving it at that.

The important thing is what comes next.

For whatever reason, Pope Benedict has decided he cannot go on.

But he's not going quietly. He is trying to set up the Conclave to pick the sort of man he thinks is required. The showing of the dossier to all the Cardinals when inside the Conclave is proof of that.

Let us pray that his judgement, made after much prayer, is sound and that out of the process comes another Pope St. Pius X. In human terms - impossible. But God works according to His own ways, not ours.

Mari Kate said...

Frankly in this beautiful message, I hear the heart of a true servant who recognizes the move of the Holy Spirit. Only true humility and wisdom and a great sacrificial love for the Church could be his motivations. People who throw stones are the same who would throw them at Pope Benedict even if he hadn't abdicated.

Prof. Basto said...


"...witnessed the Chances..." should be "...witnessed the changes..."

"...the Pope said in his February 11th that..." should be "...the Pope said in his February 11th Declaration that..."

c'mon said...

Joe: It seems that the BEST thing for the Pope to do is to STOP hiding the dirt and FINALLY make a clean breast of things. Many believe that there are other reasons than ill-health behind this move. As for prudence, Scripture says, "For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the prudence of the prudent I will reject." (I Cor I:19) I am 60 yrs old and have been witnessing the steady dismantling of the Faith for 50 of them by men who are either idiots or enemies. Time to clean house!!!

Francis in Ma said...

Pope Benedict XVI is the Vicar of Christ on earth and the sucessor of St. Peter until February 28. As a poor sinner I don't agree with his decision to abdicate the Chair of Peter because, as I've stated in other posts, it opens the door for the enemies of Christ and His Catholic Church both inside and outside the Church to redefine the Papacy as a man invented, centered and "progressive" institution rather than the Divinely established LIFETIME institution that Our Lord wanted. I pray for Pope Benedict XVI, yet I do not agree with his abdication.

Genty said...

We see. But we do not know. Yet.

Matt said...

Whatever the real reason the Holy Father is abdicating is between him and The Lord. At this point it doesn't make any difference but only the bad precedence it sets.

I read recently "a previous Pope?" had said there is no room in the Church for a Pope Emeritus. If so, then it would be even more crowded should the present Holy Father remain in Rome within a stone's throw to the succeeding Pope. How awkward that is. Why isn't Benedict going back to Germany to live in the house he had built for his very retirement when JP2 past away? Strange.

Patrick said...

There is no point in crying over spilt milk but Benedict XVI is, in my opinion,leaving the future of the Church to a huge gamble. I have minimal confidence in this sorry crop of cardinals as I honestly did in Benedict XVI himself. He has only done an adequate job with occasional moments of luster for which I am grateful. The next pope will come from an exceptionally mediocre batch at best. As for the Holy Spirit, I remember the numerous papal elections where His presence was remarkably muted. Either there is much more behind this abdication or it is simply a dereliction of duty. Aged popes simply delegate appearances and trim their activities till death. We have had one too many superstar popes who made the office so exhausting as to guarantee a fizzling out with age.We could have used one who squarely stayed on at the helm and guaranteed a college of cardinals up to the task of selecting his worthy or worthier successor in time. Sadly, we didn't get one and he's not even becoming a Carthusian, which would have made some sense at least.

Ted said...

" The showing of the dossier to all the Cardinals when inside the Conclave is proof of that. "

Do we know that this is going to happen?

Julian Barkin said...

LeonG, about your comment at 24 Feb 2013 17:54,

I have been observing the posts on here in the last few days with regard to the SSPX countdown (that doesn't exist apparently) and Pope Benedict's resignation from the Papacy.

In earnest, I have noticed a number of comments from you in the past few days, and I must say that generally speaking, what has been said has a tone of depreciative criticism and a "rad-trad" angle to it. Considering the Holy Father has done much for Traditional Catholicism, posts like yours come across with notes of ad hominem attacks and a sad stereotype of what Traditional Catholicism is all about.

For everyone, such an example as this is unfortunate, because the Latin Mass, as well as Traditional Catholicism, has much to offer spiritually for eternal salvation, and young people are desiring more orthodox practice of the Catholic faith. Unlike myself who is of "sterner stuff" to not be easily discouraged by examples like this quote of Leon's, such examples as exhibited here, only serve to further demonstrate the stereotypes that our Liberal enemies and mis-educated opponents throw at us, like "cold, harsh, condescending ..."

LeonG, how about instead, perhaps you and others that post on here can change the Negative Nancy tone, and give a proper and joyful send-off for all of the Holy Father's work, and in addition better example of the joy and beauty of traditional Catholicism here? Not to mention to entrust with the greatest Faith and Hope the papacy to our Holy Trinity, especially that of the Holy Spirit. Remember Matt 16:18. The Church will NEVER fall spiritually, and hasn't fallen spiritually, even when less noble popes in history have taken the helm (e.g. Medici popes). Pray hard instead of bickering.

Unknown said...

Many different opinions on the wisdom or otherwise of the Pope's decisions. All in vain, because none of us knows the truth of the matter.

I trust his judgement, and his honesty and sanctity. He has even told us why he is abdicating ... so that's that, really, except to pray for him and the Church more than ever.

Julian Barkin said...

To unknown at 19:47,

That ... Is the million dollar post. Thank you.

Luka said...

Have you think about having two popes emeriti? For example, if the next pontiff decides to abdicate while ex-pope Benedict is still alive? They could found a special dormitory for ex-popes in case there are several of them.

Now seriously. No one knows real reason for this move by pope Benedict the Wise. We can guess all we want but we don't really know, do we?

Nolite iuducare ut non iudicemni

Q Horatius said...

This is a rather good commentary on the subject:

That the Pope will no longer be involved in the political, juridical, and administrative part of the Church does not mean he will not be working ut instauret omnia in Christo.

I am not Spartacus said...

I am starting to notice a pattern in the defense of the abdication that is too eerily similar to the defenses mounted in favor of Sarah Palin when she resigned the Governorship of Alaska and then told her followers that she was not abandoning them and that she would continue to work for the good of Alaskans but that she did not need a title to do her work.

New Catholic said...

LeonG, comments critical of Summorum Pontificum are not allowed under any circumstances here. In fact, they may just lead the commentator to perpetual banishment.


Esther said...

Quote from "Cross and Crown" by Fr Robert Mader Page39. " An old legend has it that St Peter in the year 67 AD ,during the reign of Emporor Nero, at first tried to escape a martyr's death by running away. On the outskirts of Rome, where there is now a little commemorative chapel, he saw-according to the legend- the Lord carrying his cross. Domine ,quo vadis?- Where are you going Lord?asked Peter." I'm going to die for you once more,"was the answer. Peter understood the subtle suggestion of cowardice implied in these words of the Lord. He turned round and went back and on June 29 he was crucified.
The timing of the resignation just before Ash Wednesday is significant, so may we all pray in this season of Lent that Peter not faint by the wayside.

Lanna said...

I think it is interesting that the Pope used the phrase, "climb the mountain". In the 3rd Secret of Fatima, it speaks about the Pope climbing a Mountain:


The third part of the secret revealed at the Cova da Iria-Fátima, on 13 May 1917.

I write in obedience to you, my God, who command me to do so through his Excellency the Bishop of Leiria and through your Most Holy Mother and mine.

After the two parts which I have already explained, at the left of Our Lady and a little above, we saw an Angel with a flaming sword in his left hand; flashing, it gave out flames that looked as though they would set the world on fire; but they died out in contact with the splendour that Our Lady radiated towards him from her right hand: pointing to the earth with his right hand, the Angel cried out in a loud voice: 'Penance, Penance, Penance!'. And we saw in an immense light that is God: 'something similar to how people appear in a mirror when they pass in front of it' a Bishop dressed in White 'we had the impression that it was the Holy Father'. Other Bishops, Priests, men and women Religious going up a steep mountain, at the top of which there was a big Cross of rough-hewn trunks as of a cork-tree with the bark; before reaching there the Holy Father passed through a big city half in ruins and half trembling with halting step, afflicted with pain and sorrow, he prayed for the souls of the corpses he met on his way; having reached the top of the mountain, on his knees at the foot of the big Cross he was killed by a group of soldiers who fired bullets and arrows at him, and in the same way there died one after another the other Bishops, Priests, men and women Religious, and various lay people of different ranks and positions. Beneath the two arms of the Cross there were two Angels each with a crystal aspersorium in his hand, in which they gathered up the blood of the Martyrs and with it sprinkled the souls that were making their way to God."

Colleen McLeod said...

When you think about the communion of saints, there are many emeritus popes with us right now. Perhaps we could all be a bit more grateful and hopeful? I do not believe that B16 would do anything to diminish the Church or the See of Peter.

Thiago said...

Yes Lana this is quite impressive. But what is more impressive is the fact that sister Lucy tells they thought He was the Holy Father. Benedict resigned and will continue to dress in white, so it can be right: they hard the impression He was the Holy Father because He was dressed in white but in fact He is not once He resigned.

Spy Kid said...

As a professor with tenure, I can defintely see that there are disadvantages that come with life-time appointments: less accountability, less incentive to excel, etc.

Many (most?) Bishops today, with their track records (low mass attendance, low vocations, abuse issues, etc..) should be sacked for their deplorable performances (not to mention their heterodoxy). But lifetime appointments have kept these prelates in power way longer than would have been opportune. Without lifetime appointments, we might have been out of this mess sooner.

Do tenure, and life-time episcopal appointments, really free persons from political pressure? Well, not entirely. In fact, in the episcopal realm, it allows the modernists to retain power and spread their poison...

I realize the whole dynamic is different when speaking about the Pope (one man).... the way, wouldn't collegiality be a great thing if the episcopal conferences were more traditional than the Pope?

Simon said...

“It’s revolutionary,” said Eamon Duffy, professor of the history of Christianity at Cambridge. “He’s sweeping away the mystical in favor of the utilitarian: That being a pope is a job, and the pope must be in the condition to do the job.”

El Cid said...

@Spy Kid --

Has it been conclusively stated that BXVI/Ratzinger will continue to dress in white pontificals after his abdication? The public statements from the Vatican--as usual--have been confusing on this point.

Knowing the rational way his mind works, I'm convinced he will once again clothe himself in the red and black of a cardinal. As many have said here, the figure of an emeritus Bishop of Rome has the potential for creating mischief, and BXVI/Ratzinger understands with exacting clarity that there can only be one man in white.

I think the way to understand what BXVI/Ratzinger is doing is by studying the desert fathers, whom he has always admired. Some people, like Bl. John Paul II, hold out their faith journey for the world to see even unto death. Others take to the desert. Both are valid forms of a pious life.

Beginning at 20:00 on February 28, Joseph Ratzinger, Bishop of Rome Emeritus, will live out the rest of his life as a hermit. The fact that he will do so inside the Vatican, instead of actually in the desert (or, for that matter, Bavaria) is immaterial. "Hidden from the world" is as it does.

My only hope is that we will someday be given access to any post-pontiical writings, assuming he develops a body of work. Such writings would be the capstone of a remarkable life of the mind and spirit.

And, Lanna, given the amount of symbolism and riddle in prophecies, it may just be that the man climbing the mountain is the last "man in white" to occupy the Chair of Peter. Is it Pope Benedict XVI? Who can say? I do know that if the next man is inspired to call himself Peter, I'll be spending a lengthy period of time in confession.

New Catholic said...

I didn't like the tone in Gabriel's post, nor in Tom's answer, so both have been removed. No "conspiracy theories" have been posted here, but the dismay expressed in the other post is very understandable, as well as the analysis on the eventual consequences of the resignation.

As for the "inconsequential" nature of Saint Celestine V's abdication, that led to no "modernist renovation", it should not be forgotten that it led to Boniface VIII, which led to the Avignon Papacy, which led to the Great Schism, and then the last resignation amidst a Conciliarist fever that nearly destroyed the very notion of the Papacy; his resignation was, therefore, the starting point of nearly 130 years of exile, instability, and the near-collapse of the Papacy to a twisted view of what could be called "collegiality"... No wonder Dante, who lived with the consequences, was so shocked by 'il gran rifiuto'.


tramtrist said...

New Catholic,
Thank you for censoring words against Summorum Pontificum. Perhaps LeonG should think clearly about the impact words and writing really has in the world. said...

Benedict Carter said...
But he's not going quietly. He is trying to set up the Conclave to pick the sort of man he thinks is required.

Wouldn´t be better to stay two more years and name 20 loyal cardinals that think like him?

Benedict Carter said...

Q Horatius: Thank you for that link which I read. It served as an antidote to my own earlier (unpublished) post which was highly critical.


My (fevered) imagination came up with this:

Benedict makes a speech to the whole Church, announced beforehand, that the Vatican II period has been a total catastrophe and that the Church must move smartly back to Tradition; that there are grounds for believing the Council was a false Council and the question of its abrogation will be considered. He then immediately regularizes the Society with no preconditions whatever; makes the three Bishops Cardinals along with other senior Society and other Traditionalists; sacks the entire remaining College of Cardinals, this making the Counter-Revolution permanent and THEN retires to his monastery.

But it's just a dream. He hasn't waited, he hasn't cleaned out the stables, he hasn't appointed other Cardinals, just the sorry lot we have now.

And so we really must trust God, remain calm, have a smile in the heart and worry not.

Whether homo-heresy, Modernism or the attempted re-casting of the Church's moral teaching; whether gun, bullet or prison - whatever it is that comes after Benedict may well be a test for our faith. As long as we all pass the test is all that matters.

But who knows? We may get a Pope, a little-known and obscure figure, who turns round and makes the above dream come true!

Bootach said...

I think we should all consider carefully the obvious contradiction in paragraph's 2 and 3 of the Holy Father's words. Does he, in the depths of his heart, see how he is making Peter's mistake, wishing to ascend the mountain without coming back down?

rowancarstairs said...

He gave up! It is that simple, he has opted out and can now attend to his hobbies and interests. Never was he needed more but he did not have the inclination or courage to see his work as Christ vicar through till death. Did St Peter abdicate and retire to the country?

The Gander said...

One of the lessons of the Transfiguration is that you don't get to stay up on the mountain until you have been crucified on the other one.

Crucifixion is suffering, abandonment to divine providence, the death of self, and then death itself. Perhaps the Holy Father knows that he is about to embark on an excruciatingly painful terminal illness ... that would be a crucifixion ... chosen by God for him to endure. That would make sense. It might be nice if He just said so.

However, the thought of the Holy Father choosing for himself a new state in life and spending the next few years fasting and praying for the Church in a peaceful hermitage just doesn't sound all that remarkable.

The abdication sounded better when there was a question of wolves, corruption, and/or illness. But if it is just a matter of regular old age and how one would like to spend that time. That just sounds very ... well ... modern.

Ed Vogel said...

People say: take it easy, I trust the Pope, but my faith is in Christ. Or: the church is guided by the Holy Spirit.

I can´t agree more.

But this doesn´t mean that I have to think that whatever the Pope does is the same for the church. Or it wouldn´t mind a saint pope or a lazy one.

Veritas said...

Pray for the pope. If Pope Benedict XVI follows through with his resignation on Thursday, he will have much to sacrifice.

He will probably not be allowed to write or speak publicly, because of the way his words could potentially be used to undermine the authority of his successor.

He will become vulnerable to criminal prosecution because he will no longer have the sovereign or diplomatic immunity he had as the pope. Already some European country who refuses to be identified wants to prosecute the pope in the European Court of Human Rights over the child abuse scandals.

Thus the Holy Father may become a prisoner in the Vatican, never able to leave because of the danger of prosecution that may occur if he does.

The pope has a lot to lose by this abdication, which suggests that he is not abdicating for his own personal welfare.

Let us not forget the fate of Pope St. Celestine V who, when he resigned the papacy became a liability. In fact, he became so much of a liability that to stem any threat of schism, Pope Boniface VIII imprisoned him, and Celestine died in captivity.

Ma Tucker said...

Pope Benedict is well aware of the implications of his action. I would hardly think Pope Benedict would make such a silly mistake as to give in to utilitarianism as Duffy suggests. No, there is far more afoot here than we know. An act of abdication has to be free, simply stating that the act is free does not make it so. His action was forseen in the circumstances he found himself. I trust him to do what is right. We will all know very soon the lay of the land.

These things I know for a fact:
1. Enemies were offering a little place for his retirement some time ago.
2. Enemies are now coming out boldly against church teaching confident no doubt that the next man to sit in the Chair of Peter will be one of their own.
3. Our Father in heaven laughs at their plans.

I am inclined to think he is the man in white in the message of Fatima. We shall see. Pray for the Pope and the Church.

GQ Rep said...

More and more people are reading Pope Benedict XVI's action as indeed abandoning the Faithful and the Catholic Church. His resignation (unless for the very serious scandal revealed by the 3 Cardinals and the dossier presented to the Pope), is not really a legitimate excuse considering that the last six Popes remained in office despite severe illness at the very end of their lives.
Originally, I felt very sympathetic towards the Pope and his decision to resign. But then I did alittle research, and concluded that it really is no excuse to leave. Despite John Paul II's extreme suffering at the end of his life, that process happened only the last month of his life (when all his ailments triggerd a "snowball" effect and caused a litany of complications.

No Pope suffered in recent times suffered more than John XXIII, who was diagnosed with stomach cancer in late September 1962 and suffered with it for 9 months with increasingly severe pain until he died in June, 1963. By that time, the tumor had perforated the lining of his stomach causing massive infection into his abdominal cavity, and the cancer had also matasticized (spread) throughout his body.
Yet he remained Pope until the day he died.

I am changing my original position after reading many commentaries, and agree with the French Catholics who write that the Pope is abandoning his post and the Church.
It is a grave mistake which will weaken the office of the papacy, and leave it open to unworthy canidates in the coming conclave. It will also possibly (not necessarilly), transform the Papacy into an elected office with a fixed term, whereby the occupant will be expected to resign at a certain point.....just like the leacers of the Anglican and Episcopalian "church".
This is a tragic event for the Catholic Church which I hope is made less so my the election of a traditional, orthodox and Faithful Pope who will clean the Vatican out of the corruption revealed by the Cardinals, and will continue a liturgical restoration and repudiate much of the agenda of the Church over the last 50 years.

I am not Spartacus said...

As for the "inconsequential" nature of Saint Celestine V's abdication, that led to no "modernist renovation", it should not be forgotten that it led to Boniface VIII, which led to the Avignon Papacy, which led to the Great Schism, and then the last resignation amidst a Conciliarist fever that nearly destroyed the very notion of the Papacy; his resignation was, therefore, the starting point of nearly 130 years of exile, instability, and the near-collapse of the Papacy to a twisted view of what could be called "collegiality"... No wonder Dante, who lived with the consequences, was so shocked by 'il gran rifiuto'.

Dear N.C. Thank you for that excellent recapitulation of Ecclesiastical history; clear, concise, and, more importantly, convincing that this abdication is being accorded way too much deference and respect.

As the initial shock of the abdication has dissipated, more and more Traditional Catholics are coming to understand the radical nature of the abdication and how it is transgressive of the nature of the Papacy - and note how little noise is coming from the liberals regarding the abdication; apparently, they are content to have the idea of the Papacy deformed so as to be thought of as a mere job with expected retirement and benefits etc

Crouchback said...

A surprise resignation . .

Could we be in for an even bigger shock . .???

A new Pope from out with the college of Cardinal's . . .???

GQ Rep said...

Hey Everybody,

Explosive Monday in Vatican news.
Everyone try to watch CNN or CNN International this AM. Two huge reports.....
1)Cardinal Keith O'Brien, accused by several peopple this weekend of sexual abuse of them dating from the 1980's has been told to resign immediatly by Benedict XVI. O'Brien is out as Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburg in Scotland, and WILL NOT participate in the conclave to elect a successor to Benedict XVI !!

That's two radical dissenting liberals gone from participating in the conclave in the last two days...
Darmaatmadja, SJ -Indonesia (almost fanatically against Catholic tradition and the Tridentine Latin Mass)
O'Brien- Great Britian (accused of multiple counts of sexual abuse of boys and seminarians in the 1980's).

If they had any morals, Mahoney and Daneels will stay away from conclave too. But they don't.

I'm off to catch the train to work in NYC for the week....but I know alot of reporters at CNN and will learn alot about these scandals.

Also, there is a BIG news conference going on right now at the Vatican, addressing the Vatican sex scandals in the Curia!!!
So much for denials!!!

Apparently the Pope will not make the dossier contents common knowledge for the Cardinals....but will hand it over to his successor.

Another sign that there's ALOT to hide.

Let's pray that Dannells will stay out. I heard that Mahoney might be on his way to Rome.

Prof. Basto said...

I agree with what Ed. Vogel says.

Of course the Holy Spirit sustains the Church, particularly in the doctrinal field, and particularly by protecting the Petrine magisterium from errors regarding matters of dogma.

But that divine assistance is not a panacea.

The history of the Church shows that in matters of governance, of ecclesiastical discipline, the human government of the Church is very important, and so it does make a huge difference if we have a holy Pope or a lazy one, but not only that, it does also make a huge difference when the Church has efficient and able leadership, compared to less efficient and less skilled Popes.

The history of the Church shows that it is wrong to assume that the divine assistence promissed to the Church will act in fields where it was not promised that the Holy Spirit would divert the Church from mistakes.

So, in matters such as the appointment of bad Cardinals and Bishops, in the faliures of leadership that led to schisms, etc., and, more recently, in the handling of the paedophilia scandal (e.g. one "administration" lets a man like Fr. Maciel Degollado go unpunished, the next does something about it and places the Legionaries of Christ under intervention), we see that the human side of the government of the Church indeed makes a difference.


By the way, important news from the Bulletin of the Holy See Press Office. The Pope today received in audience the three Cardinals members of the Vatileaks Commission:

Il Santo Padre Benedetto XVI ha ricevuto questa mattina in Udienza: Card. Julián Herranz Card. Jozef Tomko Card. Salvatore De Giorgi; Card. Marc Ouellet, Prefetto della Congregazione per i Vescovi.


Also, the BBC is reporting that Cardinal O'Brien "resigned his post"; that the Pope accepted his resignation as Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh; and that he will not take part in the upcoming Conclave.

According to the BBC, this resignation "follows allegations - which he contests - of inappropriate behaviour towards priests dating from the 1980s.

In a statement, [Cardinal O'Brien] apologised to those he had offended during his ministry

The cardinal confirmed he would not take part in the election for a successor to the Pope - leaving Britain unrepresented in the election."


I'm left wondering. It is said that Card. O'Brien will take no part in the Conclave. But the other day Fr. Lombardi and the Secretary of the Pontifical Council on the Interpretation of Legislative Texts reminded us that the participation in the Conclave is not only a right but also a duty for Cardinals; that they are summoned and must appear in virtue of sacred obedience; that the law commands them to come unless absolutely impeded; that even in case of infirmity the excuse presented must be evaluated by the College; that even excommunicated Cardinals vote (e.g., a Cardinal that retains the Cardinalate because he was not deposed, but that is under an undeclared excommunication, remains a Cardinal elector).

Then, if Cardinal O'Brien recognizes that he should not participate in the Conclave, does it mean that he has also resigned the Cardinalate? Has a resignation of the Cardinalate been accepted? If none has been offered, will Cardinal O'Brien tender his resignation as a Cardinal? If not, how can he go ahead with his promise not to take part in the Conclave, without violating his summons from the College of Cardinals?

Sursum Corda said...

The Holy Father stated:"The Lord is calling me to "climb the mountain", to devote myself even more to prayer and meditation."

Which mountain, I wonder, Tabor or Calvary?

What a mystery all of this is. How hard it is to watch and pray! But I am praying and watching.

James Kohn said...

Ditto on the thanks to New Catholic for the historical look on Celestine V, very helpful for context going forward.

Having said that and maybe its just me but Im not nearly as concerned with this as I was initially. But again thats my opinion.

Petrus said...

What are people going on about ?

I don't feel "abandoned" by Pope Benedict XVI.

His renunciatio takes effect on 28 February.

The See of Peter will then be vacant until a new pope is elected by the college of cardinals.

And then, they will proclaim : "Habemus papam".

And the life of the Church will continue.

Fear not. I am with you always, yes, to the end of the world".

c'mon said...

"Amen, amen I say to thee, when thou wast younger, thou didst gird thyself, and didst walk where thou wouldst. But when thou shalt be old, thou shalt stretch forth thy hands, and another shall gird thee, and lead thee whither thou wouldst not." John 21:18