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Spanish cardinal reflects on Pope’s resignation announcement

Catholic World News - February 14, 2013

In a brief interview, Cardinal Santos Abril y Castelló, a longtime Vatican diplomat who was appointed Archpriest of the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore in 2011, reflected on Pope Benedict’s resignation announcement.

“We were very astonished by the news because evidently such an announcement is no small thing for the life of the Church,” he said. “And we, who are the Holy Father's closest collaborators and pastors of the Church, received the news at the same time with profound regret … We received it especially with immense respect, because we know that Benedict XVI has a very profound sense of what the Church is.”

Describing Pope Benedict as “a Pontiff who has been characterized by his humility despite his having a lucid mind and a tremendously clear vision of everything,” Cardinal Abril y Castelló added that “on some occasions he seemed very tired, although in no way did it seem to be a worrying state of health. However, the Holy Father has been able to size up well his physical situation at 85, which isn't as good as we thought.”

“So we ask the Lord to continue to accompany and bless him for the immense good he has done,” he continued. “Meanwhile I lament that in the future we won't have the lucidity and clarity of his teaching as Pontiff, although we will be able to continue to profit from the books, addresses, and documents he has left us.”

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  • Posted by: koinonia - Feb. 15, 2013 9:55 AM ET USA

    "But in Ratzinger I uncovered the fact that liturgy, and its reform and restoration, finds its deepest meaning in the Christ which dogmatic theology encounters in awe and wonder. Dogma became the academic road ecclesiastical obedience laid out for me, and it bound me even more to the man who would be elected as the Successor to St Peter." -Reflection by Fr. Christopher Smith, Christendom College alum. What Fr. Smith "uncovered" is really nothing new. Lex orandi, lex credendi.

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