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The Pope’s enigmatic words on resignation

Discussion in 'Pope Francis' started by BrianK, May 31, 2017.

  1. BrianK

    BrianK Resident Kook, Crank, Curmudgeon - & Mod Staff Member

    http://www.catholicculture.org/commentary/the-city-gates.cfm?id=1458

    The Pope’s enigmatic words on resignation
    By Phil Lawler (bio - articles - email) | May 31, 2017

    In his homily at Mass on Wednesday morning, commenting on St. Paul’s farewell to the Church at Ephesus, Pope Francis said:

    A shepherd must be ready to step down completely from his church, rather than leave in a partial manner….

    All shepherds have to step down. There comes a moment where the Lord says ‘go to another place, come here, go there, come to me.’ And it’s one of the steps that a shepherd must take; be prepared to step down in the correct way, not still hanging on to his position. The shepherd who doesn’t learn how to do this because he still has some links with his sheep that are not good, links that are not purified by the Cross of Jesus.
    The homily as a whole focused on the role of a bishop, with the Pope insisting that a bishop must recognize that he is not “the center of history,” but a servant of his people and their Lord. Still those words about stepping down—and the emphasis on stepping down completely—caught the attention of many Vatican-watchers. Was Pope Francis speaking in general terms about the proper duties of bishops and pastors? Or did he have something more specific in mind?

    If the latter, was he hinting that he might be considering resignation?

    Or was he sending an oblique message to Benedict XVI, who seemed to be breaking his silence last week?

    I don’t have the answers. But I am not alone in raising the questions.

    [​IMG]
    Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at CatholicCulture.org. See full bio
     
  2. BrianK

    BrianK Resident Kook, Crank, Curmudgeon - & Mod Staff Member

    http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/201...erds_are_not_the_centre_of_the_church/1315676

    Pope Francis: 'Shepherds are not the centre of the Church'
    [​IMG]
    Pope Francis celebrates Mass at Casa Santa Marta

    (Vatican Radio) The true shepherd knows how to step down from his church, because he knows that he is not at the center of history, but is a free man who has served without compromises and without taking control of his flock. That was Pope Francis’ message during his homily at Mass celebrated on Tuesday in the Vatican’s Santa Marta residence.

    Listen to the report by Linda Bordoni:

    [​IMG]

    “A shepherd must be ready to step down completely from his church, rather than leave in a partial manner” said the Pope.

    His words were drawn from the first reading at Mass, where St Paul addressed the church leaders in Ephesus. The Pope said that this reading could easily be called “A bishop’s leave taking” because Paul has left the Church of Ephesus in order to go to Jerusalem, where the Holy Spirit called him to go.

    “All shepherds have to step down. There comes a moment where the Lord says ‘go to another place, come here, go there, come to me.’ And it’s one of the steps that a shepherd must take; be prepared to step down in the correct way, not still hanging on to his position. The shepherd who doesn’t learn how to do this because he still has some links with his sheep that are not good, links that are not purified by the Cross of Jesus” said Pope Francis.

    According to the Pope, St Paul had held a council with all the priests of Ephesus and during this council he had demonstrated three “apostolic attitudes.”

    The first of these is never turning back. The Pope said that this is the worst of all sins, to turn back. This is the thing which will bring much peace to the shepherd, when he remembers that he is not a shepherd who has led the church through compromising. Pope Francis admitted that this attitude requires much courage.

    The second attitude is obedience to the Spirit, without knowing what will happen. A shepherd must know that he is on a journey.

    The Pope said that Paul was a shepherd who serves his sheep.

    “Whilst guiding the Church he had an uncompromising attitude, at that moment it was the Spirit who asked him to go on his journey, without knowing what would happen to him. And he went because he had nothing of his own, he had not wrongly taken control of his sheep. He had served them. Paul said ‘Now God wants me to leave. I leave without knowing what will happen to me. I know only this - the Spirit had told him this - that the Holy Spirit had testified to me that trials and tribulations are awaiting me from city to city.’ This was what he (St Paul) knew. That I am not retiring. I am going away to serve other churches. The heart is always open to the voice of God, I am leaving this place, I will see what the Lord is asking of me. This is a shepherd without compromises who is now a shepherd on a journey.”

    The third attitude is “I do not consider my own life to be precious in any way. I am not the center of history. Whether it’s large history or small history, I am not the center, I am a servant” said the Pope.

    “With this most beautiful example, let us pray for our shepherds, for our parish priests, our bishops, the Pope, that their lives will be lives lived without compromise, lives on a journey and lives where they do not believe that they are the center of history and have learned how to step down. Let us pray for our shepherds.”
     
  3. Praetorian

    Praetorian Powers

    Does anyone know what this sentence was referring to?
     
  4. BrianK

    BrianK Resident Kook, Crank, Curmudgeon - & Mod Staff Member

    https://www.catholicculture.org/commentary/the-city-gates.cfm?id=1453

    Did Benedict just break his silence?
    By Phil Lawler (bio - articles - email) | May 23, 2017

    For more than four years, since his resignation took effect, Pope-emeritus Benedict XVI has very carefully avoided public comments on the state of the Church. For someone who was a very public figure and a very prolific author, his silence was conspicuous. When he announced his plan to resign, Pope Benedict pledged his loyalty to his successor, and he obviously intended to keep that promise, saying nothing that could possibly be interpreted as a criticism.

    Yes, the retired Pope did occasionally write a congratulatory letter to a fellow theologian, or even a foreword for a book. But he steered well clear of contemporary ecclesiastical debates. He has cooperated in the production of his collected works, and on at least one occasion he made an editorial decision that some careful readers saw as significant, in light of current debates within the Church. But leaving aside that one case—which involved a subtle change, and required expert interpretation—Benedict has not written or said anything that could be cited as a clear disagreement with Pope Francis.

    With Benedict’s steadfast silence in mind, I am still mulling over the significance of his decision to write an “afterword” for Cardinal Sarah’s book, The Power of Silence. It would have made perfect sense for Benedict to write a foreword for the book. His praise for the book is obviously genuine, and Cardinal Sarah’s views are certainly in accord with those of Benedict/Ratzinger the theologian. But Benedict’s “afterword” was released only after Cardinal Sarah’s book was already in print.

    Once a prolific author, Benedict at the age of 90 can no longer churn out written material at the same pace. Maybe he was simply late with this contribution. Maybe that explains it all. Or maybe he read the book recently, and was inspired to write something about it. That possibility makes perfect sense as well; Cardinal Sarah’s message is that powerful.

    But when I read the retired Pontiff’s afterword, I pause when I reach this sentence:

    We should be grateful to Pope Francis for appointing such a spiritual teacher as head of the congregation that is responsible for the celebration of the liturgy in the Church.

    Benedict’s reference here is to Cardinal Sarah’s role as prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship. Again Benedict’s praise is undoubtedly heartfelt; there is no doubt that Cardinal Sarah is, in Benedict’s opinion (and mine too, not that my opinion matters) exactly the right man for that job. But do the words of the retired Pope take on a different meaning in light of the persistent rumors that Pope Francis plans to remove Cardinal Sarah from that position?

    [​IMG]
    Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at CatholicCulture.org. See full bio.
     
  5. Pope Benedict did not really step down from the papacy.
    Everybody knows this.
    The man calling himself " Pope Francis " has been found out and now desperately fights a rear guard action to prevent the truth being disclosed.
     
  6. Praetorian

    Praetorian Powers

    The laity no authority to make that claim.

    And it is untrue that "everybody knows this".
    It is your opinion and one that is in error.
     
  7. gracia

    gracia Angels

    Anthony, I think that while one can certainly hope that Benedict somehow remains the valid and legitimate Pope, that it is not possible to know this.

    It is certainly understandable how and why a Catholic might think that. Or hope that.

    Folks elsewhere on the Forum have urged a silent, inner pull away from chaos, and towards Christ Crucified, and Mary. That is beautiful advise. I know that Francis can not destroy Truth. I know that it seems like he's basically trying to mold the Catholic Church into something that resembles Lutheranism more than Catholicism.

    And maybe Benedict *is* still our Pope. I sure hope so. At least spiritually.
     
  8. I do not believe I am wrong.
    It is not an opinion but a firm conviction based on the factual evidence and a reasoned assessment of the consequences of all such extant evidence.

    Again you return to this canard about the laity as though the Catholic Church were some layered hierarchy where only those in Holy Orders alone can judge facts.
    It represents the sort of dismissive and contemptuous thinking that only an exclusive caste of priests have any authority at all on church matters.
    For what's it's worth many priests, bishops and cardinals share my concerns.

    Again if you knew your church history you would also understand that situations of this kind are not new.
    There have been anti popes before.
    anti Pope Clement V11 was elected by a college of Catholic cardinals.

    What is new is the spectacle of a Pope claiming to resign and breaking the rules on how he should resign then giving the appearance of not having properly resigned.

    That is indeed unique and mysterious .
     
  9. davidtlig

    davidtlig Powers

    That's still an opinion, AT :)

    The forum is full of opinions that present themselves as statements of 'the truth'.

     
    Praetorian likes this.
  10. Fine.
    However heresy contains error hence untruth.
    It is simply not possible for me as a practising catholic to regard or accept as pope an individual who speaks and writes heretical statements on the sacrament of Matrimony , on the immortality of the soul, and on the divine commandment to preach the gospel to every creature.

    Logically and rationally such an individual even if validly elected [something I dispute] has lost the papacy.
    I have made these points many times now and if you want to follow the truth as presented by Fr. Bergoglio SJ then do so.
    He and his heresies are not for me.
     
  11. davidtlig

    davidtlig Powers

    Thank you. I will do just that. :)
     
  12. Your choice.
    As a practising catholic I can not support your choice.
    About two years ago I predicted that Fr Bergoglio SJ would cause a schism in the church.
    He himself is on record as saying " I may split the church".

    How sad that the unity of the Catholic Church is so damaged .
    How sad that Catholic teaching on the sacraments in one diocese now differs substantially to that in another diocese and all because of the anti pope and heretic Fr Jorge Bergoglio SJ that you have now thrown your lot in with.
     

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