Showing posts with label conclave. Show all posts
Showing posts with label conclave. Show all posts

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

And Now We Wait… and Pray

extra omnes

Extra omnes (Everybody out)

The Cardinals have entered the conclave to begin the process of choosing a new Pope.  Many of us have picked up the apps, have registered at Pope alarm for notification of the new Pope, and  adopted a cardinal

(If you're curious, I was assigned Cardinal Juan Luis Cipriani Thorne, and for him I pray that he be guided to choose a man who would best serve the Church in the eyes of God, and if he is personally chosen to be Pope that he guide the Church wisely and well).

So now with all the instant media updates, we are now faced with… having to wait.  That's the antithesis of the modern technology.  We need to wait for the Cardinals to cast their ballots and pray until they have selected the next Pope.  We want to know NOW!  So we see the media filling the airwaves with speculation.  We can't stand silence.  But the conclave exists cut off from Twitter, RSS feeds and text messages and until we see the white smoke, we won't know anything.

This is where we need to slow down, practice patience and wait for the next Pope.

We can either pace the floors or we can devote our time to prayer.  Prayer for the conclave, for the Church, for the world, for our family and friends.

Let's have faith in God.  Let's remember Matt 16:18 and Matt 28:20.  We don't know what the future will bring, but we know the Church will continue to be under His protection.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Sede Vacante

Ubi Petrus, ibi ecclesia (Where Peter is, there is the Church)

sede_vacante

Pope Benedict XVI departs from the Vatican

Now that Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has renounced his office as of 8pm his time (11am my time) today, all of us should give thanks to God for the gift of his service and pray for God's continued protection during this time while the See of Peter is vacant.

Now is also the time to pray for the cardinals as they prepare for the coming conclave.  To them is given the task of selecting our new Pope.  We should pray that they are open to the Holy Spirit in their considerations for the good of the Church.

Finally,  we, the people of the Church, need be at peace and to recognize that the selection of the Pope is not a political affair. It is not an issue of party platforms. It is a matter of selecting the 266th successor of St. Peter. We pray for a Pope who will be a good man to lead us in the years to come.

Let us not be frightened by so-called prophecies on the internet and media attacks.  We believe that Christ has promised to be with the Church until the end of the age (Matt 28:20) and that the Gates of Hell will not prevail against the Church (Matt 16:18).  The promises made by Christ to Peter will remain for all Popes.

For centuries, people have predicted the collapse of the Catholic Church from sinners within and attacks from outside.  Through the grace of Christ, we are still here and we have faith that He will continue to protect the Church He established.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Does the Church Need a Pope from [Location Here]?

As the Church grows closer to the Pope's renunciation of office, I've seen certain discussions online concerning who should be chosen as his successor.  One of these discussions involves the statement that the next Pope should come from a certain region.  Africa seems to be the most commonly mentioned region in this regard, although other regions have been mentioned (Latin America, Italy or the United States for example).

Now, I firmly believe that the Pope, being the successor of Peter, can come from any region and if the best person for the job is from Africa, then he should be chosen for the task.

But I also think that those bloggers and blog comments who say that the vibrancy of the African Church means an African Pope would be best suited for the job are actually using the fallacy of division.

The Fallacy of Division works this way:

  • Group [X] has characteristic [Y]
  • Therefore every member of Group [X] has characteristic [Y]

Or to use an example:

  • This orchestra is the best in the world
  • Therefore every member of the orchestra is the best in the world

Maybe, maybe not.  Perhaps performing alone, some members of the orchestra are mediocre, but when combined with others, their contribution helps create the excellency of the whole.

The argument for a Pope from a region because the region is known for a vibrant faith is the same fallacy.  We can't judge the individual by the region he comes.

I don't pretend to know who will be the best choice to succeed Pope Benedict XVI (I have an idea on who I would like to see, but I will keep silent on that).  I do believe that whoever is chosen, it must be because the cardinals believe him to be the best choice to be the Successor of Peter, and not because the region he comes from is known for a strong faith.

We certainly need to pray for the coming conclave, that the cardinals will be guided by the Holy Spirit and not by human considerations.