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Monday, February 11, 2013



That Benedict XVI has taken this unusual step of resignation tells me much about the critical importance that he sees in the next papal election with respect to continuity, one of the great themes of his pontificate.

And given his statement I think also it stresses the importance of physical vigor that he understands at this time is necessary to carry on the task he has begun. His has been anything but a passive pontificate, despite his mild demeanor, and I sense he believes that the time is right to elect someone who will carry on where he has left off.

It is interesting as well that not only has he put the pieces in place for this election, he will be able to watch it unfold. That alone will perhaps help any who are lacking stiffness of spine among the cardinals, just knowing that Joseph Ratzinger is still there, observing the proceedings.

In setting a course of continuity it seems that Benedict XVI is also practicing continuity. May God richly bless him.


Hard to know exactly what to make of this announcement. The rush to comment and praise seems awfully premature to me. Popes are not infallible, their every decisions not great, and the effort to discern God's will must be a challenge to them as well as us. Summations and interpretations -- are we so spin-inclined there can't just be a period of silence? Of course not.

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