A quick note on Benedict’s departure: His departure is sad, but I am over the sadness and happy for him. If Peter Seewald’s report is true…
‘[Pope Benedict XVI's] hearing had gone down, he was blind in the left eye, his body had grown thinner,’ Seewald wrote in German magazine Focus and Italian Corriere della Sera.”
…then I do not begrudge him retirement, and actually thank him for his humility in choosing it. If, in his wisdom, which we have all trusted and learned so much from for the past 35-plus years, he has determined that this is the prudent thing to do in God’s providence, who are we to question him? I wish him many years of comfortable, restful retirement; I hope he writes many books (to be published posthumously) and I hope that his prayer for the Church bears much fruit.
Moving on to the topic of his successor and the controversy concerning Cardinal Roger Mahony, I highly doubt that His Eminence will stay away, but Cardinal Mahony was basically called out by a fellow cardinal for what we now know was his direct involvement in shielding a pedophile priest from the civil authorities.
Cardinal Velasio De Paolis, the man Pope Benedict tapped to lead the Legionnaires of Christ through their phase of soul searching and reconstruction, basically said Mahony should voluntarily not show up for the conclave.
“This is a troubling situation,” Cardinal Velasio De Paolis told the Italian daily La Repubblica.
Cardinal De Paolis said that Cardinal Mahony might be “advised not to take part,” but has the right to do so. He suggested friendly persuasion, but concluded that “it will be up to his conscience to decide.”
Yeesh. That can’t make for a comfortable first meeting in the Sistine Chapel, since Mahony, if his reaction to Archbishop Jose Gomez’s decision to remove his public duties on behalf of the Archdiocese is any indication, is not going into retirement quietly.
(Hm. Could Benedict quickly make Archbishop Gomez a cardinal?)
That aside, I’m utterly confident that whomever appears on that balcony some time in mid-March wearing white will be the Holy Spirit’s guy.
Further, I propose that any post put up here at CatholicVote concerning the papabili use this image: