Five Years Later: The Tragic Figure Of Benedict XVI
Today is the fifth anniversary of that fateful day, in which Pope Benedict XVI announced his intention to abdicate at the end of the month and make way for a more vigorous Pope.
Benedict's Pontificate had been, Summa Summarum, more Catholic than JP II's, particularly because of the historic Summorum Pontificum. Therefore, I then believed in the honest, straight narrative of a Pope who feels that his strength is leaving him and, remembering the last sad tears of JP's Pontificate, decided to make way for a more energetic man, confident that the Conclave he was about to leave would lead to the election of a man continuing on his path, a Benedict XVII so to speak.
This reading still makes, if you ask me, the most sense. However, the past five years have not helped the man to rise in my, or many others', estimation. Actually, if I were the man I would now be rather scared for my salvation.
Benedict The Emeritus has disappointed in many ways. One can mention here:
1. The at least two interviews – two were really brutal and I have written about them; there were other minor occasions – in which Benedict approved of Francis' work and expressed himself in glowing terms concerning his Pontificate.
2. The failure to do what he said he would do: retire to a life of prayer and contemplation. It seems nowadays not even nonagenarian Popes can resist the temptation of frequent interviews and photo-ops, with or without Bierkrug.
3. The failure to condemn Pope Francis when it became clear that the pontificate was steering towards aggressive heresy. In particular, his silence concerning Amoris Laetitia and the many heresies and blasphemies therein contained – something a theologian like him must see with extreme clarity – is most shocking from one who claims to still keep the title of former Pope, and therefore maintains that he is still way more than just another bishop.
4. The strange neo-Catholic thinking and reference to his, apparently, imminent salvation (about which doubts are more than justified). That a Pope who decided to abdicate does not approach his impending death, at least publicly, with fear and trembling tells you all you need to know about V II and the massacre of sound Catholic thinking.
I certainly forget a lot.
In general, the man gives the impression of being not a leader, but a follower. In true German fashion, he has marched to the drum of V II without much regard for the ruins he saw around him. When it became clear to him that Francis' course was a much more brutal incarnation of V II that he could ever imagine, he decided to toe the party line and promote this new, inspired version of V II, instead of using his unique position to try to give witness for proper Catholicism.
Granted: countless bishops and Cardinals have done the same. But much fewer have given glowing interviews about Francis, and no one of them has insisted on being called Pontiff Emeritus.
Benedict is, I think, about to get into history as a tragic, pathetic figure. Too weak to be an effective Pope, too naive to see Francis coming as a result of his many disgraceful episcopal and cardinalatian appointments, too cowardly and gregarious to denounce the disaster unfolding under his eyes, and even praising Nero whilst Rome burns.
Now, in his last legs, the recent, disquieting public announcement of his own impending salvation; which is what V II does to you if you allow it to work on you for 60 years.
Posted on February 12, 2018, in Catholicism, Conservative Catholicism, Traditional Catholicism and tagged Heresy within the Church, Pope Benedict, Pope Francis, V II. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.