Home > Roman Catholicism > Pope Announces His Intention to Resign: Text and Video

Pope Announces His Intention to Resign: Text and Video

February 11th, 2013
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One must admired the principled positions Pope Benedict XVI has consistently taken on life issues, as well as his determined efforts to support the Church’s mission and ministry in a tumultuous time of cultural change. I find this all extremely fascinating. The last time a Pope resigned was in 1415 when Gregory XII resigned to end the Western Schism of the Church. [Disclaimer for my earnest Lutheran friends: Yes, he is the Pope. Yes, we have extremely significant doctrinal disagreements with the Roman Church, notice the appeal to St. Mary.]

Here is his statement of resignation.

“Dear Brothers,

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 bark 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.”

Video follows:

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Categories: Roman Catholicism
  1. Rev. Allen Bergstrazer
    February 12th, 2013 at 08:04 | #1

    It is fascinating. Interesting terminology used “I renounce the ministry of Bishop of Rome.” Of course renounce means to give up by formal declaration, but when my old Lutheran ears hear ‘renounce’ I translate it ‘repudiate’ or disown. It’s been fairly obvious that Benedict’s health has been poor, even in advanced age John Paul II was able to struggle through a procession, Benedict has been standing a remote controlled podium. Just as Luther attempted to point out in his open letter to Leo X, in the coming days we are going to see where the real power of the Catholic church lies.

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