Benedict’s Last Papal Audience: What is the Church?

Pope Benedict gave his last Audience today. As you can see, Piazza San Pietro was packed. In his address, he gave a quick discussion about the nature of the Church when he described the response to his resignation.At this point I would like to offer heartfelt thanks to all the many people throughout the whole world, who, in recent weeks have sent me moving tokens of concern, friendship and prayer. Yes, the Pope is never alone: now I experience this [truth] again in a way so great as to touch … [Read more...]

B16: Not Going Away – He Will Be Close To Us In Prayer.

Pope Benedict gave his final Angelus Address this morning in Rome. Unfortunately, many of the translations do not include what he said in this clip at the end: "[I]n preghiera siamo sempre vicini." ("In prayer, we are always close [to one another]")Lent sort of took me by surprise this year. It started early and I was distracted, not uncommon for me. But the one thing I did have clear was that I wanted to go deeper in prayer. The topic was part of a paper that I gave in Rome just before Lent … [Read more...]

B16: No more church of what’s-happenin’-now.

I continue in my belief that Benedict's decision to resign is a momentous time of reform and readying the Church for the modern age. Last week, B16 addressed the Roman clergy and gave informal remarks reflecting on Vatican II. They were in many ways a reiteration of his 2005 Address to the Roman Curia...which most of us didn't notice.The fact that he chose now to hit the same theme suggests that it's important and tied to the legacy of his papacy. I've got an article on it here at National … [Read more...]

Bp Paprocki & March Madness: How to Address B16 After Feb. 28

Bishop Thomas John Paprocki [STL, JD, JCD] of Springfield in Illinois sent around the following canonical analysis on what to call Pope Benedict when he leaves office on February 28th. He has graciously allowed me to post them for those of us engaged in a different sort of March Madness.Since Pope Benedict’s surprise announcement last week, there has been much discussion about what to call a Pope who steps down from office. The confusion is understandable since a Pope has not left office alive … [Read more...]

Benedict’s Resignation – Bringing the Church into the Modern Age

So, here's my two cents about B16's resignation. In a piece in the Washington Times today, I maintain that this is part of John Paul II and Benedict's vision for the future of the Church. You can read the piece here.Additionally, I think it's important to note that Benedict will be remembered for influencing two consistories conclaves. The last with his homily on the dictatorship of relativism and this with his extremely clear signals as to what the leadership of the Church should look … [Read more...]

Benedict XVI: Humble, Heroic, Groundbreaking Servant

I know, those adjectives don't always go together; but Benedict is a unique case. I was just in Rome where I wasable to be at a private audience with the Pope on Thursday. I was there for his address to the Order of Malta on Saturday, when the Order celebrated its 900th anniversary. And I was there on Sunday for the Angelus.When I left Rome on Monday morning, the news had not broken yet. Landed at Dulles and, well there you have it! History had been made just a few hours before. It's … [Read more...]


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