Papal Transition

Benedict will be prayerful presence in next papacy, spokesman says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Even though Pope Benedict XVI will spend his retirement near Rome and then inside Vatican City, he will not play any role in the upcoming election for a new pope, and he will not interfere with the responsibilities and decision-making activities of the new pontiff, the Vatican spokesman said.

Pope to live in Vatican monastery established by Blessed John Paul

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The Vatican monastery where Pope Benedict XVI intends to live began its life as the Vatican gardener’s house, but was established as a cloistered convent by Blessed John Paul II in 1994. When Pope Benedict, 85, announced Feb. 11 that his age and declining energies prompted his decision to resign effective […]

In hindsight, Pope Benedict’s resignation seems almost predictable

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — As much as he astonished the world when he announced his resignation Feb. 11, Pope Benedict XVI’s decision seems almost predictable in hindsight. Given his previous statements on the subject and his recent signs of aging, one might say that people should have seen it coming. The real mystery now is […]

Pope Benedict’s pontificate marked by teaching, call to return to faith

Citing his age and diminishing energy, the 85-year-old pope announced Feb. 11 that he would be resigning effective Feb. 28 and would devote the rest of his life to prayer. As pastor of the universal church, he used virtually every medium at his disposal — books and Twitter, homilies and encyclicals — to catechize the […]

Pope Benedict’s resignation will set in motion period of transition

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — While the surprise resignation of Pope Benedict XVI is a first for the church in centuries, it also leads to a complicated period of transition that ends in the election of a new pope. Regulated by ancient traditions and recent rules, the period between popes — known by the Latin term […]

Pope Benedict’s resignation announcement stuns world leaders

WASHINGTON (CNS) — Pope Benedict XVI’s announcement that he planned to resign Feb. 28 stunned and shocked religious and political leaders around the world. From Africa to Europe, Asia and Latin America, Catholic leaders offered warm words of praise and pledged to pray for the 85-year-old pontiff’s health. They pointed to Pope Benedict’s love of […]

List of potential cardinal-electors for a papal conclave

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Here is a list of cardinal-electors, from oldest to youngest, eligible to vote for a pope in a conclave.

Pope Benedict shows signs of aging, but Vatican reports no illness

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — From the moment he was elected pope at the age of 78 in 2005, Pope Benedict XVI has kept a schedule that appeared light compared to that of Blessed John Paul II, but busy for a man who already had a pacemaker and who wanted to retire to study, write and […]

Text of Pope Benedict XVI’s resignation announcement

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Here is the Vatican's English translation of Pope Benedict XVI's resignation remarks, delivered in Latin, during an ordinary public consistory to approve the canonization of new saints Feb. 11.

14 cardinals from United States, Canada eligible to vote in conclave

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Here is a list of the 14 cardinals from Canada and the United States -- including Cardinal Justin Rigali, retired Archbishop of Philadelphia -- who are under the age of 80 and therefore eligible to vote in a conclave to elect a successor to Pope Benedict XVI: