Time of renewal
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
These days it is evident that our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI has resigned as Bishop of Rome and Successor of Peter. Here can be found the letter in Latin and translated into English addressed to the Consistory of 10 February 2013.
I have convoked you to this Consistory, not only for the three canonizations, but also to communicate to you a decision of great importance for the life of the Church. After having repeatedly examined my conscience before God, I have come to the certainty that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry. I am well aware that this ministry, due to its essential spiritual nature, must be carried out not only with words and deeds, but no less with prayer and suffering. However, in today’s world, subject to so many rapid changes and shaken by questions of deep relevance for the life of faith, in order to govern the barque of Saint Peter and proclaim the Gospel, both strength of mind and body are necessary, strength which in the last few months, has deteriorated in me to the extent that I have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to me. For this reason, and well aware of the seriousness of this act, with full freedom I declare that I renounce the ministry of Bishop of Rome, Successor of Saint Peter, entrusted to me by the Cardinals on 19 April 2005, in such a way, that as from 28 February 2013, at 20:00 hours, the See of Rome, the See of Saint Peter, will be vacant and a Conclave to elect the new Supreme Pontiff will have to be convoked by those whose competence it is.
Dear Brothers, I thank you most sincerely for all the love and work with which you have supported me in my ministry and I ask pardon for all my defects. And now, let us entrust the Holy Church to the care of Our Supreme Pastor, Our Lord Jesus Christ, and implore his holy Mother Mary, so that she may assist the Cardinal Fathers with her maternal solicitude, in electing a new Supreme Pontiff. With regard to myself, I wish to also devotedly serve the Holy Church of God in the future through a life dedicated to prayer.
From the Vatican, 10 February 2013
BENEDICTUS PP XVI
What the Holy Father is showing us is the need of our Church for a new strong leader, a new force, a renewal.
In recent years there have been many attacks of Satan that have hit on it and that led to the scandals of pedophilia , divisions, power struggles within the Church. In this climate of despair, many believers have lost that flame that feeds the life of Christ, the Faith. No coincidence that in the last year, the Holy Father declared the Year of Faith.
In his long pilgrimage in history, the Church has experienced many difficult and turbulent times. One very important thing has to be highlighted though: the fact that the Lord our God through the work of the Holy Spirit has always guided and supported it , operating through all the changes that affected the Church within the inside of itself and the outside world To the latter I refer to the work of simple people who through their faith and their works have become great performers and pillars: our Saints.
An obvious example is illustrated in a painting by Giotto of the famous dream made by Pope Innocent III where he sees a poor man covered in rags supporting the colonnade of the Church which is about to collapse. He recognized the man, who is none other than St. Francis of Assisi, the true meaning of Christian doctrine, one of the main lessons which Christ taught his disciples, “Whoever wants to be first must be slave of all” ( Mark 9: 35).
In these historic events near and far, that we can truly know and experience the presence of God and his great love for us, a God who leads and who does not abandon.
Just when it gets dark around us, rises at the horizon a light showing us the way , to do not be lost. The period of Lent, we are living, is a great lesson in this sense: fom the ashes of what we are made of.. (the beginning of Lent with Ash Wednesday) through the love of God, and the renewing of the Holy Spirit we are led to the resurrection and to the glory of the Easter Day.
Our church needs a concrete renewal and on this our beloved Pope Benedict XVI wanted to stress very well. Even all of us as Christians and children of God we are called from the baptism to be true protagonists of this renewal, keeping in mind that the Church is not only an institution consisting of only priests, but we are all members and an active parts in it.
Indeed, we are all called to proclaim the Word of God but to be persuasive we must first experience it in our hearts and live it in everyday life.
Let’s renew our hearts with the love of God!
This is our Church, the effective witness of Christ on earth!
Let’s renew it!