Breaking Tradition, Pope Benedict XVI Resigns

Posted on April 24, 2013 by


Monday, 11 February 2013, marked an emotional  day for the 1.2 billion world-wide Catholics as Pope Benedict XVI, formally Joseph Ratzinger, informed the Roman Catholic population—as well as the rest of the world–that he would be resigning from his position on the 28th of that month.

Ratzinger stated that he was “well aware of the seriousness of [his] act” and that “with full freedom I declare that I renounce ministry of Bishop of Rome, successor of St. Peter….”

Elected into the papacy in April of 2005, Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger not only holds the title of being the 265th pope but also the first pope to willingly resign since Celestine V’s resignation, noted as “The Great Refusal,” which occurred in 1294.

“The Pope is not any man. He is the Vicar of Christ. He should stay on to the end, go ahead and bear his cross to the end,” Alessandra Mussolini said, granddaughter of Italy’s wartime dictator.

According to the faithful, the Bishop of Rome is believed to be chosen by the Holy Spirit as the earthly representative of Jesus Christ.

Cardinal Pell claimed in a candid interview on the eve of the Pope’s departure that the German pontiff should have been “well aware that this was a break with tradition”.

So the question remains, Why would someone with such determination in maintaining the ways of the Vatican City call it quits? And how would someone known as “God’s rottweiler” for his stern stand on theological issues, who also believes the office comes from a divine authority, not find it an anathema to break traditions that have been around for millenniums?

“This is a huge sign of world destabilization that will weaken the Church,” stated Mussolini.

Ratzinger also stated in his announcement that in order to govern “….both strength of mind and body are necessary, strength which in the last few months has deteriorated in me to the extent that I have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to me.”

He ruled out any specific illness and said the decision was made “without outside pressure,” but like nearly any decision, Ratzinger’s was not without controversy.

Controversy was no new trend for the previous pope, seeing that scandals hounded most of his papacy.
It was the story of betrayal and blackmail at the highest levels of the Church, and, allegedly, a homosexual lobby organized within the Vatican to obtain and influence important decisions, all of which Ratzinger summed up as “stormy waters” in his public departure speech in St. Peter’s Square.

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