… You would think I would learn. Learn and trust. What’s one of the cardinal rules of the Catholic Church… everything has a reason. Look at the liturgy. One who doesn’t know better sees meaningless ritual. But each action is seeped in meaning and, of course, serves a purpose. It has a reason. The Church doesn’t just do things for the sake of doing them.
So when I started seeing pictures of Pope Benedict coming down from the walls the minute he left the protection of the Swiss Guard I bristled. The Chair of Peter was still warm and all over the world people were yanking down Benedict’s image. It felt disloyal and showed a lack of affection for a Pope so many claimed to love dearly. It was why I kept my Potpourri of Popery gallery up in my sidebar. I wasn’t ready to let him go.
My perception; however, was based on ignorance. Oh, and lack of trust. I should have know there was a reason, and a pretty darn good one for doing so. But I went off thinking I knew better.
The taking down of a picture, the formal closing of a door, these are just the small but meaningful rituals that reverberate in our hearts and — more powerfully — illustrate to us, and to the world, that time moves forward; it comes, it passes, the new moment is gone. Yesterday is not today; tomorrow forgets everything that seems to matter at this moment.
Sr. Mary Martin of the Dominican Nuns of Summit, New Jersey removes the image of His Holiness Benedict XVI. The nuns note on their own blog that,
Now the wall is bare. Now the people who have gathered at the Vatican, at Castel Gandalfo, in front of computer or the TV around the world, go home, back to the events of their daily life with sadness but with hope, too, as we begin a new chapter in the life of the Church.
I love that they titled their post The Journey Begins. That is what this time is, a journey. A journey full of hope and possibility. I am look forward to seeing who the Holy Spirit puts in place as our new leader. And people accuse the Church of clinging to the past. Catholics are the few people left in the world that haven’t been marred and ruined by cynicism. We remain hopeful always and while I may miss my Pope from the public eye it doesn’t mean he’s gone. Even in death he isn’t gone. Taking down his picture, making room for the Holy Spirit’s work, isn’t betraying Benedict’s memory. Now that I can accept that I can slowly allow myself to be excited to witness this moment in history.