Benedict XVI.

Benedictus XV.Benedictus XV. (1914-1922)

“Habemus papam” is probably the most important sentence said this year. After a long day doing research in the library, falling almost unconscious onto the sofa and turning on the news, this was really a surprise. Alright, I wasn’t right with Tettamanzi and I thought the conclave might take longer because the participants have no pressure to hurry up, their lodging is comfortable like never before and the Sistine Chapel has a roof (one conclave was speeded up by exposing the conclave to the roughness of nature). The new pope’s name is Benedictus XVI. The last pope with this name was Giacomo della Chiesa (1914-1922), he failed repeatedly to conciliate the parties involved in World War I. Benedictus is the first word in the song of Zacharias at the birth of John the Baptist. Traditionally, the choice for the new name carries a message. I wonder why cardinal Josef Ratzinger chose that name.

One sidenote: “That a German has been elected as pope is a moment of pride, it is an honor,” said Angela Merkel, the leader of the opposition Christian Democratic Union (source: Spiegel Online). Pride has never been a favorable or salutary emotion. Pride as the strong emotion it is can be hurt, be it by other people’s insults, or in extreme cases, by simple difference of opinion. Where I’d have to agree, Benedict XVI.’s heritage as German apparently wasn’t a disqualification for his eligibility.

1 Response to “Benedict XVI.”

  • update: Cardinal Meissner said that Cardinal Ratzinger chose “Bendictus” as his new name, because he ‘devoted his life to peace between all peoples’. Unfortunately, Bendictus XV wasn’t successful.

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