We mourn the death of this extraordinary Pope who was a gift of Divine Mercy to mankind and who gave himself totally to the end.
"We can be sure that our beloved Pope is standing today at the window of the Father's house, that he sees us and blesses us."
Homily of Cardinal Ratzinger at the funeral Mass, April 8, 2005
God did not leave us orphans for long. He gave us, as Pastor of His Church, another giant of faith, doctrine, and holiness, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who took the name of Benedict XVI. Here are the first words of the new Pope to the faithful, given from the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica, April 19, 2005:
"Dear brothers and sisters, after our great Pope, John Paul II, the Cardinals have elected me, a simple, humble worker in God's vineyard. I am consoled by the fact that the Lord knows how to work and how to act, even with insufficient tools, and I especially trust in your prayers. In the joy of the resurrected Lord, trustful of his permanent help, we go ahead, sure that God will help. And Mary, His most beloved Mother, stands on our side. Thank you."
Like John Paul II, Benedict XVI will be a solid rock on which one can rest; he will courageously do God's will and continue to feed us with the splendor of the truth, never bending, never swaying, never watering down the Gospel of Christ. Let us support him with our loyalty and our prayers!