The other day, "Pope Emeritus" Benedict XVI paid a visit to Castel Gandolfo. According to the reports carried in the SSPX news agency, the former Pope was described by witnesses as ".. a man still in good health for being 92 years old, “smiling, aware, curious, available, and affable.”
According to Crux, another witness stated: "...it was striking to see his fairly thin, very fragile physique and his severe difficulty in walking".
The two statements are not contradictions, but complementary. They describe an elderly, mentally aware gentleman, who in his 92nd year has taken on some understandable frailties, such as difficulty walking.
However, in today’s world, subject to so many rapid changes and shaken by questions of deep relevance for the life of faith, in order to govern the barque of Saint Peter and proclaim the Gospel, both strength of mind and body are necessary, strength which in the last few months, has deteriorated in me to the extent that I have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to me.
For this reason, and well aware of the seriousness of this act, with full freedom I declare that I renounce the ministry of Bishop of Rome, Successor of Saint Peter, entrusted to me by the Cardinals on 19 April 2005...
Nearly seven years ago, Pope Benedict informed the Church that due to deteriorated strength of mind and body that came on "in the last few months", he was "for THIS reason", renouncing the papacy. I, like so many others I know, believed that a health issue had come upon the Pope and that he was in his final months of life.
However, since he is still very much alive, obviously the event/events were NOT medical.
So, what were they?
What precipitated this collapse of "strength of mind and body..."?
WHAT HAPPENED IN 2012 THAT CREATED SUCH MENTAL AND PHYSICAL STRESS ON POPE BENEDICT THAT HE TOOK THE UNPRECEDENTED STEP TO RESIGN THE PAPAL OFFICE?
The Pope himself gives us a clue as to the real reason: "shaken by question of deep relevance for the life of Faith..." The "life of the Faith", in other words, the Church was under attack not only from the world, but also from WITHIN.
Question: Why do you think the Pope resigned?
The combox awaits readers reflections, comments, and contributions as to the reason/s and motivation/s for the papal resignation.