I heard the news the Pope Benedict XVI was resigning literally as I was walking out the door for my shift at the hospital and my heart hurt. There were so many questions. I had stayed up way past my "work bedtime" reading the book my George Ratzinger, My Brother, The Pope and for the first time in his eight years I felt like I knew my Pope. And now...
I put the book down for while, not because I was done or didn't want to read it, but because I simply had some other things going on. The other night I decided that I needed to finish before we had a new pope and I have learned so much about the man, Joseph Ratzinger, and what it means to be Pope.
It was not about power or honor for our pope emeritus. He was so humble and reserved and never saw himself in the seat of Peter. But the man is loving and true and hearing his brother, George, tell us from his perspective made me feel so close to this man that I have never met. And now he is no longer our pope. The torch will be passed to some other man who will carry the burden. It will not be about power or honor for the new pope either.
My heart is heavy. It aches a little but I can't explain how I feel... not really. I literally just watched black smoke billow out of the papal smokestack. I know they cardinals will come to a conclusion in God's time but I am a little impatient. You see, the news is talking about this election and their being two sides and how the church has all this scandal blah, blah, blah. It is driving me insane...
PEOPLE! The Pope has already been chosen! We just don't know who it is yet. God made a man for this job and the cardinals of the world are simply... figuring it out. They are not "picking" someone. There is not a "front runner" and this is not a popularity contest. It is so much deeper than that. Stop predicting.
I have fallen more in love with the Catholic Church in the past month. I have a newfound respect for our history and the whole process that is unchanging. It is really amazing. I love my faith and I love knowing where it came from. I cannot wait to find out who the next Pope will be.
So until we know more... my eyes will be on that smokestack waiting for the white smoke and ringing of the bells!
Pray without ceasing.