Monday, February 11, 2013

Patriarch of St. Stephen's statement on the resignation of Benedict XVI

11 February 2013 (ACNS) - The Patriarch of Saint Stephen made the following statement in response to the announcement of Pope Benedict XVI that he intends to resign at the end of the month.


It was with extreme sadness that I learned of the Holy Father's pending resignation to take place at  the end of the month. Benedict XVI was (and still is) both a forward-looking leader and one who is well-grounded in faith and tradition. This is not a unique combination of traits, but it is not common. What has made Benedict such a good Pope is his true humility. This is not a false humility or humility as so many people wrongly understand it. It is not failing to exercise the Petrine office to the fullest. He was (and still is) the Pope, and he took his office seriously. Rather, the humility that Benedict possesses is that true humility which is a complete surrender to the will of God. This is what has made Benedict such a special and effective Pope in this crucial time in history when secularism has threatened the faith from without and modernism has threatened the faith from within. The gates of hell shall not prevail against the Holy Church, and I believe it is in fulfillment of that promise of our Lord that people like Benedict come to the Petrine office.

We wish the Holy Father a blessed and spiritually rewarding retirement and thank him for the kindness which he has shown us. It will never be forgotten. Now let us all follow the Holy Father's example of trusting in the Lord and doing His will. Let us never be afraid for the future of the Church, and let us be always thankful for this period in which the Church has been blessed with the pontificate of Joseph Ratzinger, Benedict XVI.