Pope Benedict XVI sworn in as private secretary in 2012

Pope Benedict XVI sworn in as private secretary in 2012 plans to resign

According to Private Secretary Gänswein, the late Pope did not want to follow the example of his predecessor John Paul II when he was ill. Benedict XVI struggled with this decision for a long time.

Benedict XVI, who died on Saturday, had already informed his private secretary Georg Gänswein of his decision to resign in September 2012. “My immediate reaction was: ‘Holy Father, this is impossible, it’s simply not possible,'” Gänswein said in an interview with Roman daily newspaper “La Repubblica” (Monday edition). On February 11, 2013, Joseph Ratzinger surprisingly publicly announced his resignation.

“Then he said to me, ‘As you can imagine, I’ve thought this through carefully, I’ve thought, I’ve prayed, I’ve struggled. And now I’m going to share with you a decision that’s been made, not a thesis, that’s up for debate. It’s not a question. de quaestio disputanda (open question, note), it is decided. I am telling you, but you must not tell anyone,'” reported the 68-year-old Curia Archbishop.

“Benedict once told me: ‘I cannot and do not want to follow the example of John Paul II when I am sick, because I have to deal with my life, my decisions and my strength.’ That’s why the Pope made this decision. In my opinion, this requires not only a lot of courage, but also a lot of humility,” said Gänswein. He ruled out other explanations for Benedict’s sensational resignation.

Why in Latin? “In the Language of the Church”

When asked why Benedikt made his resignation announcement in Latin, Gänswein replied, “Benedikt said that such an announcement should be made in the language of the church. That’s how he read those words, which became his resignation statement”, explained Gänswein. When asked why Benedict XVI referred to himself as “father emeritus” after his resignation, his private secretary replied that it was his personal decision. “I believe that before such an extraordinary decision, the return to the office of cardinal would not have been natural. However, there is no doubt that in these years (since the papal election of 2013, ed.) there has been a single pope named Francis”, then goose wine.

In connection with the Vatileaks scandal, Gänswein revealed that “the documents were not stolen from Pope Benedict’s desk, but from mine. Unfortunately, I only realized this much, much later, too late. I spoke to Benedict and told him plainly: ” Holy Father, I am responsible, I accept. I ask him to assign me another task, I resign.” ‘No, no,’ he replied, ‘We are a small group here and we will stick together,'” says Gänswein.

The “Vatileaks” case involved the release of confidential documents on corruption and money laundering in the Vatican. In the case, former papal valet Paolo Gabriele was sentenced to 18 months in prison in 2012. Pope Benedict XVI pardoned him shortly before Christmas 2012.

Cardinal Bertone: “I thought it was just a passing thought”

Former Vatican Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone also confirmed that Benedict had already decided to step down in 2012. “Benedict XVI started talking to me about his resignation in spring 2012, but I thought it was just a passing thought. we approached the subject with more determination and I realized how deep that intention was in prayer and reflection,” Bertone said in an interview with the newspaper La Stampa on Monday.

“My soul was troubled and oppressed at the thought of the reaction such an event would provoke in the Church and beyond. My prayer intensified and my nights were less peaceful. I tried to get him to take the announcement as long as possible, using the promise as an excuse that he had finished the book on the childhood of Jesus by Christmas (2012, sd) in order to be able to offer the entire trilogy on Jesus of Nazareth to the Church, and the announcement of his resignation was postponed until February 11 November 2013, feast of Our Lady Lady of Lourdes”, reported Bertone.