There are a number of reasons that Benedict’s surprising resignation is a good thing, though we will miss him being our Pope.
- Very few men have the humility to resign such a position. It is an act of virtue we should all be thankful for, especially in such a me-first culture.
- He didn’t resign under pressure. If this were done after the media started speculating on his failing health, it would have appeared to have happened because they thought he ought to.
- It keeps the speculation from building too much. With the resignation coming as a surprise, all of us have less time to speculate, and that includes the Cardinals who will elect the next Pope and the media.
- Pope John Paul II taught us faithfulness by carrying the cross of his failing health and Benedict XVI can teach us faithfulness in trusting that another can do something better than we can. What a teachable moment he has created.
- It isn’t unprecedented. We have had other Popes who have resigned. So, he gets to revive an old Catholic practice.
- He has done what he said he would. He wanted to continue to carry the mission of JPII on into the future. He has done that well.
- He gets a say in who will succeed him. He will definitely influence who is elected and get a chance to use his influence in a positive way.
- Lent is a great time to step aside. A period of prayer and penance will mean more prayers for the Church and the Cardinals selecting the next Pope.
- He is a man of his word. In the past, when he was asked if he would ever step aside, he said he would if his health didn’t allow him to fulfill his duties to the level he thought he needed to.
- We get a double celebration at Easter! Jesus rises and we should have a new Pope by then!
BONUS – it is good for Joseph Ratzinger! He asked JPII if he could resign from the Curia several times and JPII didn’t let him. Now he gets to spend time with his books, his music, and maybe a cat. Can’t say I blame him.
Benedict XVI, The Catholic Church, the Cardinals, and our future Pope need your prayers. Please join me in praying for these intentions! (0)
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