Vatican expert thinks Pope timed resignation for Easter

Rome, Italy, Feb 12, 2013 / 05:07 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Benedict's resignation during Lent is no coincidence according to a Vatican expert who thinks the timing was tied to the Church’s liturgical calendar."He did this at the beginning of Lent because he wanted to ensure that when we celebrate Easter with the risen Christ, we could have a new pontiff with the Lord's resurrection," said Paul Badde, the Rome correspondent for the German newspaper Die Welt."He … [Read more...]

German atheists suddenly respect Pope, says journalist

Rome, Italy, Feb 12, 2013 / 01:04 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- A German journalist and acquaintance of Pope Benedict XVI says atheists in their native country are more respectful of him after realizing their perception of the pontiff was wrong."The atheists are very respectful now of him because they had a completely invalid image of him clinging to his power, although it meant nothing to him," said Paul Badde, Die Welt's Vatican correspondent since Feb. 2002."They saw him as … [Read more...]

Pope’s last Mass will be on Ash Wednesday in St. Peter’s

Vatican City, Feb 12, 2013 / 08:28 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Amid the buzz created by the Pope’s announcement that he will retire, it could be easy to miss the fact that his last Mass will be on Ash Wednesday and not in the normal location for the first day of Lent. “It’s very clear that St. Peter’s is a much bigger church than Santa Sabina in Aventino, so for a celebration in which we expect there will be a lot of faithful, bishops and cardinals who wish to be present to … [Read more...]

Eleven Americans among cardinal-electors

Vatican City, Feb 12, 2013 / 02:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In the conclave to elect Pope Benedict's successor, 11 of the 117 cardinals eligible to vote in the closed-room meeting will be Americans. The Diocese of Rome will be “sede vacante” or vacant at 8 p.m. on Feb. 28, when Pope Benedict's resignation goes into effect. On that day, 117 cardinals will be eligible to elect the successor to the Holy See. The conclave must begin within 20 days of his date of … [Read more...]

Youth gather to pray for Pope, recall his loving guidance

Vatican City, Feb 11, 2013 / 04:00 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- A group of young adults at the Vatican called Pope Benedict XVI’s decision to resign “humble” and “brave,” adding that they are “impressed by the strength of his choice.”“I have a lot of respect for his choice,” said one member of the Vatican’s youth group “San Lorenzo,” which gathered to pray the rosary in St. Peter’s Square for the Holy Father.“We … [Read more...]

‘Your pontificate will shine like a star,’ head cardinal tells Pope

Vatican City, Feb 11, 2013 / 11:49 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Cardinal Angelo Sodano, the dean of the College of Cardinals, told Pope Benedict XVI that his pontificate will always shine like a star as he reacted to the news of Pope’s resignation."The stars in the sky will continue to shine and your pontificate will always shine like them among us," said Cardinal Angelo Sodano, just after the Pope read his declaration of resignation on Feb. 11."We have heard you with a sense … [Read more...]

Benedict XVI plans life of prayer after retirement

Vatican City, Feb 11, 2013 / 10:55 am (CNA/EWTN News).- After Pope Benedict XVI retires at the end of February he will dedicate himself to a life of prayer and study in a Vatican-based monastery.The Pope, who announced today he will step down on Feb. 28, will first stay in Castel Gandolfo before eventually going back to the Vatican to live in Mater Ecclesiae monastery.The monastery is currently being renovated, but it is normally inhabited by a group of nuns who pray for the ministry of … [Read more...]