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Thanks, Your Holiness

I'm not sure why everyone is acting shocked over Pope Benedict's announcement that he's going to step down as Supreme Pontiff and give a younger man a shot at the Chair of St. Peter. He was older than dirt when they elected him Pope eight years ago, and at this point he is older than Pope John Paul II was when that holy man died in office after a long and painful illness.

For what my opinion is worth, he did a good job, considering that he was elected as (essentially) a placeholder. He annoyed all the right people inside and outside the Church, did his best to clean up the leftover messes from previous papacies, and proved not to be the slavering inquisitor so many had feared he might be. If he was not what people hoped he would be, perhaps the fault is in them and their expectations and not in the man himself.

I hope he enjoys a few years of peace and quiet before the end.


Feb. 13th, 2013 04:20 am (UTC)
He was apparently planning this since last April. As you say, he was old when elected, and just can't do this anymore, especially since now the Pope is expected to travel so much.
Feb. 13th, 2013 10:47 am (UTC)
What's come as a real surprise are all the people (not all of them Catholic) who apparently think it's a requirement to die in office. What's up with that?
Feb. 13th, 2013 02:40 pm (UTC)
Bad grasp of Catholic history. At least two popes have resigned.
Feb. 23rd, 2013 08:17 pm (UTC)
pope EOL
without commentary on all of the stuff that is flying, I think that the
habit of popes dying in office is not good for anyone; the church, the
laity, the people, and the pope his(or her) self. just covering all bases
there :-)

it virtually guarantees reduced effectiveness for a period of years, at what
must be considered a pretty important post (important in a lot of peoples
lives anyway)

i think structurally this pope may be setting a good example; when you are
no longer up to the rigors of doing the job correctly, then step aside and let
younger legs carry on the work, plus you now have the option of the retired
pope being a bit of a brain trust or trusted advisor (or not - up the the sitting
pope I am sure) which might be an advantage.

Feb. 24th, 2013 02:01 am (UTC)
Re: pope EOL
I agree, and hope future Popes who are feeling their age follow his example.
Mar. 14th, 2013 12:31 am (UTC)
new pope installation
this one has new features!

ok, not that many new features, but a few

first one from the americas
for Jesuit pope as I understand
and as a Jesuit he took the name Francis, so from a
rival order, which some will see as significant

of course, he is older too, which might mean nothing
or might mean that the cardinals are not convinced of
the wisdom of a young man as pope who might hold
on to power for 30 or 40 years.....


anyway, to the Catholic world, congrats on a new pope!

Mar. 14th, 2013 12:55 am (UTC)
Re: new pope installation
I am quietly excited about this. Pope Francis has a solid record as a Jesuit and as a bishop in Argentina helping to stamp out the heresy of liberation theology and despite this is apparently a quite humble and unassuming man.

I am also thinking that he may have had several of the various St. Francises in mind in choosing his name; while St. Francis of Assisi is of course the best known (the Dr. Doolittle of his day, LOL) there is also St. Francis Xavier the Jesuit, and St. Francis de Sales, the gentle and ascetic Bishop of Geneva who won many Swiss Protestants back to the Church.

I am certain that he will give us Catholics what we need rather than what the world wants, much like his two predecessors. :)



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