Rorate Caeli

The Great Elector - Der Große Kurfürst

Joseph Ratzinger, Cardinalissimo

Submission and the use of reason: in which consists true Christianity.

St. Augustine: Reason would never submit, if it did not judge that there are occasions in which it ought to submit. It is then right for it to submit, when it judges that it ought to submit.


Jon said...

I don't buy it.

There's no getting around the drool bucket and wheel chair and the reply "Jesus did not come down from the Cross."

"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."

God help us. God help Josef.

irish catholic said...

Now that Pope Benedict has announced his retirement at the end of this month, this is a wonderful opportunity for him to make his pontificate the most successful in out times if he carries out the following:

1. Command all the Bishops to consecrate Russia to the Immaculated Heart of Mary as urgently requested by Our Lady.

2. reveal the contents of the Third Secret.

3. Without and strings attached rewconcile the SSPX

Since he has only a few days remaining as Pope he can ignore all the opposition against this and simply walk away into retirement and let others battle it out.
Surely this would go down in history as a remarkable achievement of his pontificate.

Trento said...

What if the conclave elects Ratzinger again?

The Postmodernist said...

Trento, he might choose the name Peter of Rome. :)

IM said...

To all those commentators with critique on (the decision of) the Holy Father, especially since yesterday; I hope that you will find some time to please turn away form the screen for some moments and reconsider last Sunday's Epistle.

... Charity is patient, is kind: charity envieth not, dealeth not perversely; is not puffed up;

Is not ambitious, seeketh not her own, is not provoked to anger, thinketh no evil;

Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth with the truth;

Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.

Charity never falleth away: whether prophecies shall be made void, or tongues shall cease, or knowledge shall be destroyed.

For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.

But when that which is perfect is come, that which is in part shall be done away. ...

(I Cor 13, only 4-10)

And in case you'd wonder to whom to apply that charity, then please recall the parable of the Good Samaritan, in which we hear Jesus say that the one who fell amongst robbers was "[a] certain man [that] went down from Jerusalem to Jericho" - not the other way. So, even if the Pope might be wrong in his decision, still I hope you can be charitable to him.

I do not want to forbid you to think, or to air your concern. But shouldn't you rather write the Pope Himself about your concerns, rather than just babble in here?

Thank you.

Miles Dei said...

The modernism was time ago looking for finish the las for life office among the bishops of the Church.

This Pope -still is The Pope- wrote about that in 1969. Today he finished that work. And almost every people claps and give thanks... The katejon is fully terminated.

Carlton said...

I've been reading here and there that the Pope must be much more sick than what he's saying. If that was the case, why would he step down -- if he knew his time was short?

There is a terrifying possibility that he's been diagnosed with Alzheimer's of the drawn out variety (like Ronald Reagan) and knew the Church could not afford a "long Good-bye."

However, barring the latter, the resignation is not helpful to the Church. If the Pope was simply losing energy, then he could have eliminated his globe-trotting, slimmed down the unmanageable mushrooming Vatican bureaucracy (or simply ignore it), and GOVERN (which includes sending a network of loyal lieutenants to execute consequences when his directives are ignored or contradicted).

In the future, whenever a Pope makes unpopular decisions (or even mistakes) which the leftist media and political establishment around the world detests or capitalizes upon, there will be calls for his resignation. Pope Benedict has set a precedent which will not serve his successors well.

Kathleen said...

Please pardon my ignorance, but is the inference here that our Holy Father will have some voice in his successor this way?

Perhaps not formally, but effectively?

If so that is the missing piece and relieves my anxiety tremendously.

I am heartbroken and worried and pray for the best for our Holy Father and the Church, so again, please pardon my ignorance.

New Catholic said...

Kathleen, you are not as ignorant as you think you are!

JabbaPapa said...

It is extraordinarily beautiful that we have had a Pope who never really stopped being a Cardinal of Our Holy Church, and who will return to being a Cardinal obedient to our Holy Father.

Blessed ! Blessed ! Blessed !

It is hard to imagine a better candidate than Pope Benedict XVI to be the Patron Saint of the College of Cardinals.

Santo non subito -- pero, dopo si !!!

James Kohn said...

Its starting to sound like some people are in dispar here. Remember Christs promise to the Church. Meditate on Mark 4: 35-41. DOnt be afraid as Bld JPII said, the waters will be rough ahead but oh the comfort that we have being blessed to live in such a time! Remember Don Boscos prophecy, when things look bleak we must remember it is always the darkest before the dawn ( ie as Belloc put it: "You have mistaken the hour of the night: it is already morning.”)

Rejoice! We are becoming the Church Militant AGAIN! Yippie! Maybe Im just to positive, but I am so thankful for what the Holy Father has done and with this action he acts in the light of John the Baptist, good things coming dont be afraid of the waves!

JabbaPapa said...

Kathleen is one of the dearest friends of online Orthodox English-speaking Catholicism, NC -- thank you from my heart for your gracious support of this great-hearted friend of the One True Faith.

Edgar said...

Exactly, I think he will have big influence in who his successor is and that is a comforting thought.

Ora et Labora said...

Miles Dei, I think you're probably right when you say "The katejon is fully terminated."

I have been thinking about that as well.

cufflinkcatholic said...

Just to clarify that Benedict XVI will not go back to the College of Cardinals on February 28 but will become Mons. Ratzinger. He vacated the cardinal bishopric of Ostia when he became pope and this title is filled. A cardinal must have a Roman title, whether as a cardinal deacon, cardinal priest, or cardinal bishop. There is no such thing as a roving cardinal without such a title since a cardinal is a member of the Roman clergy, which gives him the right to participate in conclaves to elect his bishop. I suspect, however, that one of the first acts of the new pope will be to create the former pontiff a cardinal. This is by no means certain, nor is the acceptance of the (re)elevation to the Purple.

NonSumDignus said...

The thought of a Papal Cardinal Emeritus Ratzinger secretly guiding his successor did console me yesterday ... however, today his brother stated quite unequivocally that the Holy Father will make a point of not in any way interfering or influencing his successor. Perhaps, this is the kind of message that just needs to be said, but I hope it is not true.

I cannot agree more wholeheartedly with Rorate's admonition for extra penance that we be spared the scourge of an unsaintly pope in the upcoming conclave.

May Our Lady please protect Her Church, miraculously at this most pernicious time. May the enemy be confounded as Goliath and the Philistines were when the young ruddy faced youth filled with Godly faith took up the name of the Lord and smote him with a single stroke. May Our Lady, the Ark who destroys God's enemies scourge them with unmitigated disaster who try to usurp the Holy Spirit's cause in this upcoming election. May She grant us, against all that we deserve, grant us a true Saint for a Pope - nothing less will save the Church at this dire crossroads in history.

Etienne said...

Ok, I tried to google it without sucess. What is a katejon?

RogerThat said...

An interesting point I've read on a brazilian blog is that this situation may certainly repeat in the future: resigning Popes. The blogger raises one very logical explanation. He said that the progress of medicine science and methods has led people to live longer than could be imagined sometime ago, and here I add, even to look younger than really is.

We had this kind of problem in our family. My father-in-law, 81, had its reflexes so poor, but insisted he could drive. Until the day he crashed in a wall. Suddenly, sometime after he got convinced that he should sell the car, his mental health deteriorated and now he lives in a very sad condition.

We should be prepared, and disarmed, for seeing such abdications much more commonly in the Church. And I hopel, for the good of everyone.

Anil Wang said...

irish catholic,

Let's look at this one at a time:
1. Command all the Bishops to consecrate Russia to the Immaculated Heart of Mary as urgently requested by Our Lady.
This was done several times. The world was consecrated to our Lady and Russia is contained within the world. IMO, the consecreation has directly resulted in the fall of communism in Russia and the revival of the Orthodox Church. Unfortunately we still need to deal with the errors of Russia spreading, but Mary's Immaculate Heart will prevail.

2. reveal the contents of the Third Secret.
It's done and there's nothing that can be said to satisfy conspiracy theorists since if nothing more is said, this *proves* there is conspiracy, and if more is said and it doesn't match your particular theory of what the secret is, that would prove that there is a secret and that there is something to hide. It's catch-22.

Look at it another way. Do you honestly think that Our Lady could be so easily thwarted by petty politics? Have you no faith?

3. Without and strings attached rewconcile the SSPX
Not going to happen. *All* Catholics must be willing to take the Oath of Fidelity which all converts and people in positions of authority are required to take:
It can be summed up as the Nicene Creed plus submision the the Pope and Magesterium. It's an oath that make some converts think twice about converting since it is essentially a blank cheque.

If the SSPX were to join without conditions other than the standard Oath of Fidelity, they would have to accept that if the next Pope made an infallible statement that declared that Vatican II is infallible when interpreted according to Tradition, the SSPX would have to submit. The SSPX knows this, and is honest enough to stay out of communion.

Before you say that Modernists aren't required to sign this oath, I'd simply answer that they are and either use modernism against it (i.e. reinterprete the words to suit their sin) or they use stalling tactics based on "indignation/public outcry" which often intimidate all but the strongest orthodox bishops. A stronger Pope could make this a global requirement for all catechists, bishops, and boards of Catholic institutions along with the old Oath against Modernism (which sophisticated modernists can still work around, but not the average modernist):
and have a zero tolerance policy. Let's pray for such a Pope. But under such a Pope, the SSPX would have no wiggle room and have to submit to whatever is declared, and it is not a humiliation...all of us would be called such "humiliation".

Anil Wang said...

NonSumDignus said..."The thought of a Papal Cardinal Emeritus Ratzinger secretly guiding his successor did console me yesterday ... however....the Holy Father will...not in any way interfering or influencing his successor."

Of course he wouldn't, it's not his nature to undermine the Papacy.

But it would be extremely naive and prideful if the next Pope that doesn't ask for the advice and direction of a previous Pope about the wolves, who can be trusted, how to handle difficult issues, and helping the next Pope build up a circle of faithful defenders. It's not in Papal Cardinal Emeritus Ratzinger's nature to deny such a request for help from a Pope learning the ropes. So his influence will be around for as long as he is able and the next Pope hasn't completely settled in.

irulats said...

Pope Benedict could be taken from us before the 28th February, if it were God's will. He could also outlive the next Pontiff if it were God's will. I am going to pray and fast rather than torturing myself with suppositions.

WNM said...

Barring some as yet unknown catastrophe, two weeks notice for the resignation of the Pope seems shockingly negligent and irresponsible. It is incredible that the supreme pastor and teacher of 1.2 billion Catholics -- and the head of the Vatican city state -- could simply cancel all his future appointments, clean out his desk, and walk out the door. Whatever the reason for the resignation (and there may be a good and sufficient reason), I can't imagine why it was necessary to resign in a way that left the whole church aghast.

As Carlton suggested, it seems that steps could have been taken to reduce the Pope's workload, relieve him of his many wearying public duties, and allow him to retire to a semi-reclusive private life. Surely the curia, the college of cardinals and the ample supply of aides, assistants and intermediaries could have facilitated the day-to-day running of the church. This could have husbanded his declining strength while allowing him to remain Pope. If mental acuity became an issue, why couldn't a kind of regency setup be established to carry on the important functions of state, as is done in other monarchies?

If these things were possible, and if one or more could have allowed Benedict to remain a functioning (if weakened) Pope for months or perhaps years, then why was it necessary for him to resign now, in this abrupt way?

Even more, this resignation raises uncomfortable questions about the nature of the papacy itself. Is it a kind of job, in which one holds a certain position and performs certain specified tasks for a length of time? Or is it a vocation, for which one is selected by the Holy Spirit through the instrumentality of the Cardinal Electors, and who is guided and protected by that same Holy Spirit to model Christ's own fidelity to His church until death? I guess we now know the answer to that question. But I'm not sure how one could justify the early Popes (most of whom were martyred) resigning their office while still alive in order to avoid the unpleasantness of being thrown to the lions.

All in all, the clumsiness of this resignation -- the striking casualness of the announcement, the lack of convincing explanation, the absence of serious high-level consultation, the evident failure to give advance notification to the cardinals and bishops of the Church, the utter indifference to the reactions of the hapless faithful, and most of all the abrupt and peremptory timing (so at odds with Rome's usual glacial pace) -- leave me feeling increasingly dismayed and anxious. I am afraid that this will be the final, regrettable event by which this papacy will be remembered.

Kathleen said...


That's terribly kind of you, but I'm afraid you must have me confused with a different "Kathleen?"

I'm just a mid-west housewife.

Palmer said...

I agree with you, Irish Catholic. Those are the three big injustices done to the Catholic Church and her Faithful by the revolutionist hierarchy and their enablers.

I do not see this abdication as some sort of brilliant "end run". I see it more as what is depicted in John 10:12. We have been living Chapter 10 for well over fifty years. Reading the encyclicals of pious and Sainted popes of the past it is disgusting to know how long the wolves have been in the sheepfold.

The best advice I heard offered for Pope Benedict XVI was from vinnyf. He said that Holy Father should go to Silver City, NM and spend his last years with Father Cyprian and the Benedictines at Our Lady of Guadalupe Monastery. I agree wholeheartedly. Now that would cure what ails him!

Fidus et Audax said...

1. Command all the Bishops to consecrate Russia to the Immaculated Heart of Mary as urgently requested by Our Lady."

Sure, because that would work. The Holy Father can't even get these Bishops to place a crucifix on their altar and you expect them to obey this?

Matt said...

WNM, the Papacy is a ministry. It's an office-for-life. We all are perplexed at this abdication and since it hasn't happened in six-hundred years, we are not sure how exactly to deal with it. At the same time, there are various structures in place designed to deal with a Vacant See, and the Cardinals are already on their way to Rome. It is hoped they will begin the Conclave as soon as the clock strikes 8:00PM, as when the Holy Father said he's out of there. Since the Electors know this, this is would be the best time to get going on a Conclave and not to have the Interegnum last any longer than it would have had the Holy Father died and also deal with a Papal funeral.

There can be no Regents in this Church because her Head is Peter's Successor. The Successor is either on the Throne or he's not. There is no provision in Canon Law or the precedent of the Church to allow for a Regent. As it is, the Curia has already come to a stop with only the most urgent business of the Dicasteries moving forward.

As far as the Holy Father's actions, yes, they are quite shocking, and, yes, unfortunately this may set a terrible precedence for future Papacies, and creating results of unintended consequences. There are many scenarios which could have transpired but the Holy Father decided this would be the best course of action, right or wrong. It's done. Agreed, it would have made better sense for the Holy Father to hold a solemn declaration of abdication, not just "oh, by the way" at a Consistory for canonizations. That is too casual and disinterested and in very poor taste for such a grave matter. It is being said there are a few very close to him, i.e., ++Ganswein for one, who knew a while ago the Holy Father intended to do this. It is bizarre to me they didn't encourage him to abdicate in a more formal manner. I agree with you the Holy Father's Papacy just may well be remembered for the way he left than for anything he may have done as Pope. What happens at the coming Conclave, however, will speak volumes of what the Electors think of the present Papacy. :|

Just Do It said...

Fidus, you think Our Lord and the Blessed Virgin don't know what we have for bishops?! Any bishop who would refuse such an order by a pope is likely already out of the Church. Those who would comply would be the remaining bishops of the world. Get it??

It has been requested of the pope to make the Consecration. It has not been requested of the pope to make sure that every bishop including the ones of the devil will comply.