What are we going to call Pope Benedict XVI after his resignation takes effect February 28?
That question appears to be a dome scratcher for a lot of folks in the Vatican. They, like us, appear to be grappling with the ever-changing reality of history in the making. Thus, the we’ll-call-him-this … no-not-that-we’ll-call-him-this nature of the story of how we should address the man who was our pope.
At first, the story was that he would go back to being Cardinal Ratzinger. Then, it was that he would be the Bishop Emeritus of Rome. Now, the announcement is that Pope Benedict XVI will become the “Pope Emeritus” during his retirement.
Personally, I like this one best of all. It’s what I would have chosen at the beginning, if anyone had asked me.
After all, this title says what he truly will be, the Pope Emeritus.
Deacon Greg Kandra has the story. It says in part:
Benedict XVI will be “Pontiff emeritus” or “Pope emeritus”, as Fr. Federico Lombardi, S.J., director of the Holy See Press Office, reported in a press conference on th final days of the current pontificate. He will keep the name of “His Holiness, Benedict XVI” and will dress in a simple white cassock without the mozzetta (elbow-length cape).
Go to Deacon Greg’s blog here to read all the details.