Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

Community News Network

February 11, 2013

Area Catholics react to papal resignation

OTTUMWA — Catholics worldwide woke Monday to a shock: Pope Benedict XVI had announced his resignation.

The papal resignation is not unprecedented, but it hasn't happened in centuries. Gregory XII was the most recent pope to resign. That was in 1415, when the question of who should lead the church was in dispute.

That's not the case today. Fr. Bernie Weir, pastor of St. Mary of the Visitation in Ottumwa, said the pope's resignation should not shake the faith of Catholics. Weir said the resignation came as a surprise, but that change also allows for growth.

"It opens up lots of new opportunities for the church in the future," he said.

Benedict, formerly Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was elected by the College of Cardinals in 2005 following the death of Pope John Paul II. There had been speculation about his predecessor's possible resignation due to ill health, but that did not come about.

Bishop Martin Amos of the Davenport Diocese wrote on the diocesean website about his meeting with the pope.

"I met the Holy Father last spring during my regular visit to the Vatican. I found him to be a warm and caring leader with a keen intellect who is concerned with what was happening in our diocese. Both Msgr. John Hyland, VG and I also thought he looked very tired from his very extensive and demanding schedule," he wrote.

Bishop Richard Pates of the Diocese of Des Moines called Benedict's decision "courageous." The pope surprised everyone, he said, but made his decision after serving as long as he physically could before breaking with tradition and stepping down.

"I think this was a very courageous decision," Pates said.

Local reactions were generally supportive. Diana Till of Hedrick wrote on the Courier's Facebook page that Benedict's decision reflected "a wise man."

"Using common sense...He is old and needs a break...Good for him," she wrote.

Stacy Matusick of Ottumwa called Benedict, "a man of the church," and urged against speculation about why he resigned.

Benedict himself cited age in his resignation. He said "both strength of mind and body are necessary, strength which in the last few months, has deteriorated in me to the etent that I have to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to me."

Some apects of what comes next are known. Popes are selected by the College of Cardinals in a conclave at the Vatican. Benedict's resignation takes effect Feb. 28, and the conclave must begin within 15-20 days of the papacy becoming vacant.

Cardinals under age 80 can vote in the conclave. A two-thirds majority is required to elect a pope.

There is no set time for a conclave. The longest lasted more than two years beginning in 1268. The shortest have lasted a matter of days. The Vatican has said it hopes to have a new pope elected by Easter, which falls on March 31 this year, though officials emphasize it is a target rather than a deadline.

But what of Benedict himself? It has been centuries since a pope had his predecessor watching as he took office.

"We'll have to wait and see," Pates said, "but I'm sure the pope [Benedict] will exercise discretion."

Benedict's resignation pointed to a future, "dedicated to prayer."

1
Text Only
Community News Network
  • Screen Shot 2014-04-22 at 4.42.47 PM.png VIDEO: Leopard attacks crowd in India

    A leopard caused panic in the city of Chandrapur when it sprung from the roof of a house and charged at rescue workers.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • The top 12 government programs ever

    Which federal programs and policies succeed in being cost-effective and targeting those who need them most? These two tests are obvious: After all, why would we spend taxpayers' money on a program that isn't worth what it costs or helps those who do not need help?

    April 22, 2014

  • In cuffs... 'Warlock' in West Virginia accused of sexual assault

    Police in West Virginia say a man claiming to be a “warlock” used promises of magical spells to lure children into committing sexual acts with him.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Cats outsmart the researchers

    I knew a lot had been written about dogs, and I assumed there must be at least a handful of studies on cats. But after weeks of scouring the scientific world for someone - anyone - who studied how cats think, all I was left with was this statement, laughed over the phone to me by one of the world's top animal cognition experts, a Hungarian scientist named Ádám Miklósi.

    April 22, 2014

  • McCain 1 House Republicans are more active on Twitter than Democrats

    Your representative in the House is almost certainly on Twitter. Your senator definitely is. But how are they using the social network? Are Democrats more active than Republicans, or vice versa? Who has the most followers on the Hill?

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Do your genes make you procrastinate?

    Procrastinators, in my experience, like nothing better than explaining away their procrastination: General busyness, fear of failure, and simple laziness are just a handful of the excuses and theories often tossed around. Now researchers from the University of Colorado Boulder have added another option to the list: genetics.

    April 21, 2014

  • Do White Castle prices tell us anything about the minimum wage?

    The paper looked at how many delicious steamed sliders the minimum wage has been able to purchase over time. The point is that as it notes, in 1981, the $3.35 minimum could buy a whole dozen. Today, at $7.25, it could purchase just 10.

    April 21, 2014

  • VIDEO: Moose charges snowmobile, flees after warning shot

    While snowmobiling in New England, Bob and Janis Powell of Maine were charged by a moose and caught the entire attack on camera.

    April 21, 2014

  • Can Hillary Clinton rock the cradle and the world?

    What's most interesting to contemplate is the effect becoming a grandmother will have on Hillary's ambition. It's one of life's unfairnesses that a woman's peak career years often coincide with her peak childbearing years.

    April 21, 2014

  • Smartphone kill switches are coming

    Smartphones need kill switches. It's a relatively easy solution to the pricey (and irritating) problem of smartphone theft. But who would have thought that the big carriers would team up with Apple, Google, Microsoft, Nokia, Samsung and lots of other manufacturers to voluntarily begin adding the technology by July 2015? The cooperative spirit! It makes so much sense!

    April 18, 2014

  • Why do wolves howl?

    Of all the myths that dog the wolf, none is more widely accepted than the idea that wolves howl at the moon. Images of wolves with their heads upturned, singing at the night sky, are as unquestioned as a goldfish's three-second memory or a dog's color-blindness (both also myths).

    April 18, 2014

  • Biggest student loan profits come from grad students

    This week, the Congressional Budget Office projected that the federal government would earn roughly $127 billion from student lending during the next 10 years.

    April 18, 2014

  • quake.jpg Pennsylvania won’t take action following Ohio ruling on quakes, fracking

    Pennsylvania officials plan no action despite new Ohio rules on drilling that affect a seismically active area near the state line.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • VIDEO: Boston bomb scare defendant appears in court

    The man accused of carrying a backpack containing a rice cooker near the Boston Marathon finish line on the anniversary of the bombings was arraigned Wednesday. He's being held on $100,000 bail.

    April 17, 2014

  • Consumer spending on health care jumps as Affordable Care Act takes hold

    Nancy Beigel has known since September that she would need hernia surgery. She couldn't afford it on her $11,000 yearly income until she became eligible for Medicaid in January through President Barack Obama's signature health care law.

    April 17, 2014

Obituaries
Featured Ads
Poll

The Iowegian wants readers to think about rental permit fees. The Centerville City Council has conducted two working sessions and a third one is planned in order to get a feel for the public's appetite about raising rental permit fees from charging a landlord $25 every two years to charging a certain amount per rental unit per year. So, the question of the week is, "Are you in favor of Centerville increasing rental permit fees?"

A. I'm in favor.
B. I'm not in favor.
C. I'm not sure.
     View Results
Iowegian on Facebook