Tuesday 12th February
Like everyone else, I was totally unprepared for Pope Benedict’s announcement of his resignation. And yet, bearing in mind what he has said about his declining health, I can see the courage and the wisdom in his decision.
During his visit to this country in 2010, I was amazed to see how well he kept up with the demands of his very full schedule, in some cases leaving his younger assistants well behind! Once or twice, during visits to Rome, I got some idea of how demanding even his regular programme is.
I know that in taking this decision he will have been motivated, not by the desire to escape from the burden of office, but by concern that his physical frailty may prevent him from carrying out the task entrusted to him, in the way that he would wish.
I can only guess at the amount of prayer and careful consideration that lies behind this decision. Even more than usual, he will be in the prayers of us all at this time.
Bishop Paul Hendricks, CTS Chairman