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Arlington Bishop Reacts to Pope’s Resignation

by ARLnow.com February 11, 2013 at 2:00 pm 1,870 47 Comments

Pope Benedict XVI (photo via Wikipedia)Today, Pope Benedict XVI announced that he would resign the papal office at the end of the month.

The Pope said his age and declining energy level is preventing him from carrying out the duties of the office. The announcement surprised many local Catholics, including leaders of local parishes.

“With the startling news that Pope Benedict is resigning at the end of the month, we pray for the church and its leaders to seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit in choosing a new Pope,” Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Church, at 2700 19th Street S., said on its Facebook page.

This afternoon, the Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Arlington also commented on the Pope’s announcement.

In a statement, Bishop Paul S. Loverde said Catholics are “deeply grateful for his eight years of faithful and selfless service.”

As I reflect on the life and ministry of Pope Benedict XVI, I am unfailingly impressed by his serenity; a quiet, peaceful yet certain manner of speaking and acting. This serenity is rooted in his deep faith in the Lord Jesus, a faith that underlies hope and leads to love of God and neighbor. His decision to resign the Petrine Ministry on February 28th reflects this spirit of serenity.

Certainly, we are deeply grateful for his eight years of faithful and selfless service so evident in his homilies, encyclicals and addresses; in his numerous trips around the world, including his visit to our country in 2008; and his sensitive and pastoral concern for the faithful world-wide.

Thinking of the welfare of the Church which he loves so dearly and is serving so faithfully, our Holy Father is confident that his stepping aside for the election of a new pope truly will benefit the Church and allow him to continue his ministry of prayer for the Church.

I urge my brothers and sisters in the Church and beyond to pray for the welfare of Pope Benedict XVI and also to ask the Holy Spirit, Who inspired the Pope’s decision, to guide the Cardinals in the upcoming Conclave to elect a new Vicar of Christ and successor to St. Peter. With a similar serenity of spirit, let us pray for and support the Holy Father each day as he moves forward into a new chapter in his journey of faith. We remain confident about the future, recalling Christ’s words: “Behold, I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (cf. Mt 28:20).

Photo via Wikipedia

  • CourthouseChris

    I’m looking forward to learning the real reason he resigned.

    • JamesE

      Someone found out he was a guard at Auschwitz

    • Deadite

      The rebels blew up his Death Star.

    • Kat

      He wants to spend more time with his wife, kids, and grandkids.

  • John Fontain

    What he meant to say?

    “I urge my brothers and sisters in the Church to ask the Holy Spirit to guide the Cardinals in the upcoming Conclave to elect a new Vicar of Christ and successor to St. Peter so long as that successor is not a woman. Cause we all knows that women ain’t qualified.”

    • Deadite

      “Also, no brown people.”

      • CourthouseChris

        “pedophiles are cool though.”

        • Inquirer

          So, you’ll be applying for the job then?

          • CourthouseChris

            Come on, you can do better than that. Really, put some effort into your zingers. Rating: 2/10 Sophomoric at best.

          • BBMS

            I don’t think he could do much better. That’s a classic riff that never goes out of style.

          • CourthouseChris

            So you’d say you are pretty familiar with it huh?

      • confused

        Id say its at least 50-50 it WILL be a brown person. I bet theyd take a hardline brown person over a moderate euro.

        • Arlington Cat

          There is a big, but sorta not well kept, secret in the Catholic church these days. For the past 15 years, maybe longer, the Catholic church has been turning a blid eye to Catholic preiests in Africa getting married (to women). Choosing an African Pope may highlight this inconsistancy.


  • fedworker

    Abdicate, not resign. Well, that what Matt Laurer said anyways.

  • Dezlboy

    Couldn’t happen soon enough. Glad to see the anti-gay, anti-female, anti-everything liberal (that last one is to save novasteve the trouble…hehe) Pope retire.

    But, I do commend him for realizing that he was no longer up to the task. For anyone, that is not an easy decision.

  • South Awwlington

    Continue shopping in Asia, Africa and South America – the Church is in decline in Europe and North America. I wonder why…

    • novasteve

      And the population in Europe in N. America is dying out, not replacing themselves. Then those places will become a lot more conservative when the people are replaced by the people who actually have kids.

      • Dezlboy

        @novasteve, can you restate what you said? I just don’t understand what you are trying to get across. I can’t disagree with you if i don’t know what to disagree with. 🙂

    • R. Griffon

      Um… well of course it’s true that the church is in decline, but I’m curious what you think the link is between the church’s decline and people buying goods from overseas. Please do tell.

      • South Awwlington

        Shopping for the faithful that is. Not shopping for material goods.

        • R. Griffon

          Oh, I guess that makes more sense. But it’s pretty easy to understand why as there is a pretty well known inverse correlation between education and religious belief. If you want to find more pore people to convert to your religion, you have to go to where they are less educated (i.e. 3rd world and developing nations) as your ROI for converts in industrial nations will be much lower.

          • South Awwlington

            Good to know someone else shares my logic here. I wasn’t always so jaded towards religion and faith. The Church and their Policy of Intolerance have made me so. That and a couple of great science teachers.

  • Ralph

    We have a bishop? How quaint! Does he wear a funny dress too?

  • Can we expect the Catholic Church to change with the next Pope? I don’t really think so. Cardinal Marc Ouellet, formerly the archbishop of Quebec City, has the best odds of replacing Pope Benedict XVI, but he is an extremely conservative man who will definitely not want the Catholic Church to change. He is expected to be the continuity of Pope Benedict XVI.

    • novasteve

      Should Judaism and islam get with the times too and permit pork consumption? I mean pork isn’t risky to eat anymore.

      • drax

        Because Judaism and Islam haven’t changed at all and are exactly the same as 5,000 and 600 years ago, respectively.

  • HP2000

    For everyone who pines away for a liberal catholic church? Go visit an Episcopal church these days… there’s plenty of room in the pews.

    • DCBuff

      OMG you are so funny! How do you find the time, in between defending priests that like little boys? Lots more room in RC churches in Ireland these days…

  • Skeptic

    Hard to blame him – I’d quit too if my boss never showed up.

  • Arlington Catholic

    IF these commentaries are any indication, Arlington is full of very hateful, prejudiced, and small minded people. Lots of people may disagree with this pope, or this church, or Christianity as a whole, but that really ought not excuse the ignorant hate messages permeating so many messages here. This pope is more intelligent and more educated than any leader I know. The Catholic church does tremendous good in this world, has a huge commitment to education, charity, and human rights (yes, including women’s rights. It’s been doing that for thousands of years, don’t let a few decades of rapid moral change in the secular world trump a consistent moral message, even if it isn’t your message). Please read things the pope has actually written, instead of trusting Fox News or other news groups to do your thinking for you. His commitment to the poor and the youth of the world is inspiring. He is a great man who has dedicated his life to his faith in ways that most Americans really cannot even begin to understand. I wish him the best in his retirement, and am hopeful that the new pope will guide the church faithfully into the future.

    • Chris


      I second Arl Catholic’s comments. I am a daily visitor to this site, enjoy the coverage of our county, and find the commentary informative and amusing, even if at times a bit snarky. I have never posted before today, but I do so now because I’m sad so many of my neighbors feel compelled to spew such commentary. I can’t think of a surer sign our society is decaying that the bizarre display of irrational hate posted here. I’m not an apologetic for the Church’s past sins, but these comments say more about the posters than about the target of their bile.

      • The Bible

        Yes, three cheers for an organization that spent decades in a massive conspiracy to hide and protect child abusers.

      • The Bible

        Yes, three cheers for an organization that has spend decades in a massive conspiracy to hide and protect child abusers.

        • CourthouseChris

          It’s interesting watching the Catholics gather round to protect themselves from the cognitive dissonance of believing that their Church is not a good as the image it has beaten into their minds for so long.

      • Mel22201

        Well said Arlington Catholic and Chris! Thank you for your responses. There may be hope for Arlington, yet.

        • R. Griffon

          “Hate?” You guys both throw that word out like it’s plain for all to see. But all I see are stupid jokes on the Internet by people who either simply don’t take your religion and/or Pope seriously, or who may be actively opposed to it due to their views. But hate? Not that I can see.

          People would probably take you more seriously if you used less hyperbole.

    • Sam

      “More intelligent” I definitely agree because he believes in the unicorn, or maybe it’s bigfoot or something. In any case, he’s great because…..

    • John Fontain

      Arl Catholic said: “IF these commentaries are any indication, Arlington is full of very hateful, prejudiced, and small minded people.”

      Ok, let’s review. The comments on this post generally included criticism regarding the church’s sexism, racism, and protection of criminals (the pedophiles). So if I’m understanding you right, you are saying that one who speaks out against sexism, racism, and pedophilia is prejudiced, small-minded, and hateful. Do I understand you correctly?

      • CourthouseChris

        Christians find not believing in their god offensive. It’s bizarre.

    • High Riser

      Yes, I’ve read a lot of what Ratzinger has written. One letter of his to all bishops, dated 5/18/01, written while heading the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, is often cited in lawsuits by sexual abuse victims. It reinforces confidential papal orders to bishops in 1962 to keep sexual abuse of minors secret and report it ONLY to his office in the Vatican. Everyone involved in these cases including the parents and victims were required to take an oath to keep the “pontifical secret” under penalty of excommunication. I’ve also read tens of thousands of pages of church files documenting the abuse and showing that bishops, cardinals, and the pope conspired to cover up, deny, obfuscate, and obstruct. They actively sought to hide the sexual abuse from law enforcement and protect the perpetrators.

      It’s preposterous for the church to try to blame its internal systemic criminal sexual abuse scandal on the secular world.

    • Marie Antoinette

      Kudos Arlington Catholic! The reality is sad indeed.

  • The Bible

    Once you’ve nailed the last alter boy, it is time to retire.

  • GFriday

    I’m surprised he didn’t work in a mention of the Bishop’s Lenten Appeal (or BLA)

    • R. Griffon

      Would that be the papal equivalent of “Ladies and gentlemen, you’ve been a great audience … please tip your waiters and waitresses?”

  • Hasdrupal

    Anyone who has seen him trying to meet the demands of the crowds who want to see the Pope, the big shots who want their picture with him know the strength required to walk, talk, and listen fades each year he has aged. With the demands of Lent, Good Friday and Easter fast approaching, he was well advised to abdicate ( the Pope is the ruler of Vatican City State).

  • itprocessmonkey

    Oh come now, Hypocrisy and corruption contaminate all such institutions. The catholic church represents much that is good *and* – as in all cases of powerful office – has now and historically housed its fair share of scandal and reprehensible behavior. Just like our (and every) political system, religion, etc. It would be silly to deny that there are deep issues with power ; even when that power is supposed to (generally) be used for good. Poking fun at the Catholic church? No different than at Muslims, or the US political system.. no need to get one’s defensiveness up. I’m fairly certain that tongue-in-cheek comments do little to impact the divine nature and power of God, after all. 😉

  • High Riser

    It’s good that Ratzinger will resign. Victims of his coverups have been calling for it for years. But instead of spending his future days in luxury and splendor being waited upon hand and foot, though, he ought to be prosecuted and imprisoned for his many years of child endangerment, pedophile protection, and perpetuation of sexual abuse of children by the priests of his institution.

    Now, it’s on to the selection of a new pope by, guess who, the same cardinals who dutifully followed papal orders to keep the “holy pontifical secrets” (solicitation in the confessional of minors for sex) and report sexual abuse of children by their priests only to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith which was run by Cardinal Ratzinger from 1981 until he became pope. Everyone involved, including victims, were required by the Vatican to keep the sexual abuse secret upon threat of excommunication. With nearly every diocese having been involved in protecting pedophile priests worldwide, could they even find a Cardinal who has not participated in this sexual abuse racketeering? Ratzinger’s successor will be selected by the likes of pedophile protecting criminals such as Roger Mahoney who disgraced himself in LA and Bernard Law who fled the US to avoid prosecution. The church has a thoroughly defective and rotten system of governance, accountable to no one, and designed only for the protection of its hierarchy. Soon you will meet the new pope, same as the old pope.

    Is it any wonder that Catholics are leaving the church, as some put it, faster than rats from a sinking ship.


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