What was your first reaction when you heard about Benedict’s XVI resignation? What aspects of his pontificate do you appreciate? What do you wish the new Pope?
Here are some excerpts from their answers.
«In the beginning I could not believe it. Then I understood that the Holy Father had decided to take this step for the good of the Church. Since I have lived together with catholic brothers and sisters, I deeply understand that the essence of this ministry is of a spiritual nature. I want to be united with him and with the other Christians in prayer, for the election of the new Pope, so that the Church may go ahead for the good of humanity». Metta, Buddhist from Thailand
«I think it is a wise decision; since he carries out his role in the name of God, there is no doubt that God is with him. His action is unparalleled and sets an example for all humanity. His decision to retire to a monastery is also something great. My wishes for the new Pope are that with the help of God, he may be even more inspired, and that he does not get disheartened by ill-intentioned criticism». Abdou, Muslim from Algeria
«The Pope’s renunciation concerns us all. But nothing will change the things we have at heart. He has continued John Paul II’s work, and there is no way back. On the contrary, we go further ahead in mutual understanding and collaboration ». Enrique, Jewish, from Uruguay
«I think that (the announcement of Benedict XVI’s resignation) constitutes a very important precedent. I appreciated the Pope’s humility and his sincere allusions to the causes of his resignation, and the difficulties in the Vatican curia. With his decision I feel (I hope) that he has paved the way for an increased collegiality in the Church. What do I wish the next pope? Courage! He will have to bear a heavy cross, but he will be able to and have to share it more with his people». Armando, Italian with non religious convictions.
«We couldn’t believe our eyes when we saw Benedict XVI announcing his resignation. Then we were filled with a deep understanding and sympathy for him. Not even a Pope can escape human limitations! Joseph Ratzinger had the courage and sincerity to publicly acknowledge this. Our wishes for the future pope is that he continue along the path of openness towards other Christian denominations, towards other religious traditions, as well as people of different convictions». Donika and Luan, Tirana – Albania
«I think that he has taken a wise decision, though certainly not an easy one! Even this is an act of responsibility. I would like to thank him for all that he has given us. What I expect from the next Pope is that he may have always this consideration for brotherhood, this openness towards the other creeds, religious traditions, to build a world of universal brotherhood». Racim, Muslim from Algeria