A reflection on Pope’s resignation.

Fr. James Martin SJ from Huffington Post Magazine

(reflection by Dani Pranoto, a CLC’ers living in Perth, Australia)

Pope Benedict XVI and Pope John Paul II reached entirely different conclusions to the same question: Should an ailing pope resign?
For John Paul, the image of the suffering, sick pope was of spiritual value to his flock; for Benedict, the job needed to be done. Discernment is always very personal; and it is important to see how two holy men reached two entirely different decisions.

God speaks differently to different people facing the same question. In the lives of the saints, for example, we often see how the same situation is handled differently by different saints. When St. Francis of Assisi was facing a painful malady of the eyes, brought on, doctors thought, by excessive tears during Mass, St. Francis decided that he would continue as he had with attending Mass. When St. Ignatius faced similar problems with his eyes, the physicians warned him, he decided to curtail his devotions, in order to have sufficient health to do his work. Both were responding to what they felt were God’s promptings in their lives.

The Pope also shows great spiritual freedom in his resignation, what St. Ignatius calls a freedom from “disordered attachments.” Rare is the person today who can relinquish such power, voluntarily.

(as written in Dani P Notes)

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