Note: This Monday morning, when our alarm-clock-radio (permanently set at 0600 on NPR, National Public Radio) started broadcasting NPR News's Morning Edition, I was still in bed, while my wife Freny was already preparing herself to go to work. The unexpected "Catholic" news broke out about the (announcement of the) resignation of the Supreme Pontiff of The Catholic Church, Pope Benedict XVI (former Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger of Germany), the successor of the late and more popular Pope John Paul II, currently called or known as Blessed John Paul. It was a surprise for me and my wife, I believe, when I heard of the news. Immediately, I thought of his old age (85) and declining health as probable, valid reasons why he's resigning.
Now, as the day went on, the news spread out like wild fire. Yes, it's all over the world, in TV and print media. It's in the Internet, in Facebook, YouTube, blogosphere, etc. I knew for sure that that news would surely be a hot topic to talk about, especially for 1.2 billion Catholics worldwide. And that it would not fade away in a matter of days the fact that the Holy Father's stepping down takes effect the last day, 28th, of February when the Season of Lent is in full swing. (Lenten Season, for the Catholic Church, will officially start on Ash Wednesday, 13th of February 2013.)
So what's my take or what can I say about this "shocking" news of Pope Benedict XVI's announcement to resign as our head or overall leader of the Catholic Church? At first, I thought that it doesn't make sense to me, for he's not supposed to do for as long as he lives and that a resignation of a Pope hasn't been done for ages or centuries to my knowledge. In fact, I don't know or remember any Pope who stepped down from his position. What I do know is that he can only be replaced when he's dead, that the College of Cardinals will select from among its members to succeed him. On a second thought, I thought that it makes sense for the current pope to step down because he's old and that his health is declining. (Only he knows if he's still capable or not to do the job assigned to him.) The rigors and responsibilities of being the head of the Catholic Church, as we all know, are tremendous and overwhelming. With a failing health due to old age, I believe, our current Supreme Pontiff is ready to hand over the authority/responsibility as head of The Catholic Church that he's held for eight years? or trying to relinquish his authority (now that he's still alive) to someone, whoever will be chosen from among the cardinals, who is more active and energetic to lead The Catholic Church. On the other hand, it's a welcoming thought, I believe, for The Catholic Church, because as a universal church, we have to make changes in sync with the times. We all know that changes in and around the world are inevitable, whether we like it or not. Yes, changes are taking place in our world at a fast pace brought about by technology and innovations. People's ideas change. Our thinking and feelings change. Even our beliefs, too, I think. Such is our journey of life here on Earth. For as long as we have life, we undergo change/s.
What do I expect from the new, chosen, pope? Younger and more liberal-minded. And more inclusive. That's all.
Well, I'm embedding herewith below a post/link from one of the Catholic bloggers that I follow or read regularly. I have no intention other than share to/with you, my dear folks and friends, about this news/information of Pope Benedict XVI announcing his resignation today. Thanks to Marcel of Aggie Catholics for his insights.-chris a. quilpa, 11February2013
Aggie Catholics: FAQ About Pope Benedict's Resignation: Q - Why did he resign? A - Because his health was quickly declining and he didn't feel he could adequately provide the leadership The C...