Friday, March 1, 2013

A moot point, really: "Future popes might feel pressured to resign"

In last night's post, Saddened, But Not Feeling Abandoned, I said I would explain why I'm not concerned about a future pope being pressured to resign on account of the abdication of Pope-emeritus Benedict XVI.

On TV, Radio, and all over the web you will find concerns raised by everyone from long time "Vaticanistas" and Cardinals, to ordinary lay people, about the kind of precedent that is being set.

Will some people, very high up in the Church put pressure on a future pope to resign before his time? Absolutely.  Some will do it out of great sincerity for the well-being of the pope himself, and with the good of the Church in mind; others, through fallen human nature, will also do so for motivations not ordered for any good but their own. All will be responsible before God on their judgment day and from him, nothing can be hidden.

So, there is no doubt.  This will happen.  Popes will be pressured to resign. But, it's a moot point, really.

Consider that any pope weak enough to yield to the pressure of others to resign, would be capable of yielding to pressure by others on any number of important issues if he stays in office.  In other words, weakness shown in one place, can manifest itself in another.

What God doesn't will He permits, and when God permits something he doesn't will, he can order it to the good.  As Scripture says, where sin abounds, grace abounds all the more (Romans 5:20).

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church;
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