Monday, February 11, 2013

10 Reasons Benedict's Resignation Is A Good Thing

There are a number of reasons that Benedict's surprising resignation is a good thing, though we will miss him being our Pope.

10 Reasons Benedict's Resignation Is A Good Thing
  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. It isn't unprecedented. We have had other Popes who have resigned. So, he gets to revive an old Catholic practice.
  6. 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.
  7. 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.
  8. 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.
  9. 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.
  10. 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!


Mark Bocinsky said...

The news says that the Pope mentioned he will not be taking part in the selection of the next Pope. Is this faulty information? (referring to reason #7)

xcontra said...

In the state of full liberty, what a great thing to teach. It's excellent. Molte grazie, B16!

Marcel said...

He won't "officially" have a part in selecting his successor. But, he will influence the decision.

BONIFACE said...

Benedict is too old to vote in a conclave (85), as Cardinal I think over 82 cannot vote, so he would not be allowed to participate.

Mangia Mama said...

I really appreciate your post as it was really hard to believe when I first heard it this morning. I think your points are well taken and help to shed some light on what feels pretty dark. Thanks!

Katy Anders said...

This is a pretty amazing end to a pretty amazing career in the Church.

I think it is a great thing for him to feel he has that option open to him, to retire and go onto something else in his life.

So often, with high profile lifetime positions (Supreme Court Justices, Popes, dictators), people stay on way longer than they are physically and mentally able.

Bill said...

The Pope will move out of the Vatican and reside in Castel Gandolfo until the new Pope is elected. Therefore he will have no direct influence on the election of the new Pope. His influence resides in the Cardinals whom he has selected in that they probably reflect PB XI's values.

Epicus Montaigne said...

I'd love to reblog this, with your permission, at

Howard said...

I thought you were going to have as #1: "We will never see this hat again!"

On a day like today, we could use a little humor!

Marcel said...

Epicus - as long as you attribute it to our blog and give the link, then you are welcome to.

Howard - that is what I was getting at. He won't have direct influence, but will have an indirect say in it.

Rick said...

These aren't reasons.

Mary Lou said...

The pope is over 80 yrs so cannot actually vote for his successor. But it is true he will be able to influence others in who he feels would be a capable servant.

Atticus Sawatzki said...

The lay and Benedictine faculty at my high school appreciated the Pope's interest in traditional Catholicism: Mass in Latin and a renewed focus on the Medieval scholars such as St. Anselm.

At least to me, it appears that there is a paradox going on: as the Church brings a focus back to her roots, she is becoming stronger and more compelling for the next generation. It is my hope that our next Pope continues a scholarly approach towards the faith.

St. Maximilian Mary Kolbe said...

Resignation of popes is not d usual practice in d Church for it seldom happens.

Ngobesing Suh Romanus said...

You show proof of mastery of the situation. I have enjoyed reading. Thanks!