I literally have tears in my eyes. As recent as a year or two ago, I couldn't have dreamed that Ratzinger would be elected.

I can't imagine the gnashing of teeth going in some quarters right now. But let's concentrate on the joy of the moment instead of on those who will be unhappy.

Recall that Pope Benedict XVI has been a proponent of traditional liturgical forms, including Mass ad orientem. He has been solid on matters related to interreligious matters (I've been reading his book "Truth or Tolerance" on this very subject.)

One of his protégés has been Father Joseph Fessio, who headed Ignatius Press for so many years and now Chancellor of Ave Maria University.

I can't imagine the type of things we can expect in the near future, especially in relation to matters of Liturgy. Okay, I have to temper my enthusiasm somewhat. Pope John Paul II was also very strongly orthodox and conservative in relation to liturgy and other matters, but so much nonsense was still able to go on because of various levels of bureaucracy. We'll have to see whether Pope Benedict XVI (I'm still getting used to writing that) will be a better administrator.

It will also be very interesting to see who he chooses to head the various Vatican dicasteries. Wow, I need to think about all this. While I hoped for this result, I'm still a bit in shock and unprepared.

That it was such a quick election shows that there was a consensus early on. There was a unity in the College of Cardinals.

By the way, the The Ratzinger Fan Club web site has been overwhelmed.

Viva Benedict XVI! Long live Benedict XVI!!

  • The comments on this post were lost when I moved content management systems and web hosts, but here they are in a more raw form:

    • Chris:
      Dom, from the looks of it, your site is dragging a bit itself. 🙂 I am so overwhelmingly happy. I had others in mind, but those have been burned away with the white smoke. I can’t believe it. May his papacy be long and fruitful, and may our beloved Church and the whole world be blessed by his reign. VIVA BENEDICT XVI!
    • KMac:
      How wonderful for the Church and her faithful! A holy man, a devout man, and a no nonsense man leading The Bride into the 21st century. May God bless him as He has blessed us with Benedict XVI!
    • john hetman:
      Let us pray that the Lord grants him good health and the continual strength needed to bear the load upon his shoulders. His is a great weight, a very heavy cross to carry in much of a world that seems to demand insanity as its goal. But having seen him celebrate John Paul II’s funeral mass, and then deliver this past Monday a classic homily on the state of the world and the Church, I feel overjoyed that this man of such humility, patience, strength and intelligence is now holding the Shepherd’s staff.
    • dpt:
      Brought a tear to my eye too.
    • Tom:
      A new website: popebenedict16.blogspot.com : Was it “waiting in the wings”? Michael Rose of Cruxnews.com has a new website on the new pope: popebenedict16.blogspot.com It already has a number of recent postings by or about Pope Benedict XVI, most of them with entry dates and times (by Michael Rose) before the election of the new pope. I presume that Michael Rose already had his website prepared, awaiting the final detail of what its name would be.
    • KMac:
      I can’t help but to think what some of the more ‘notorious’ Benedictine’s (Chitister, weakland) are going through right now. I’ve checked CTA,Todd’s blog, and NCRep and not a peep so far. My heart is light.
    • Patrick Coffin:
      How can you not feel deeply consoled by the good Lord? A former progressive who advised the left-leaning German bishops in Vatican II; a true intellectual contemplative; a fearless defender of the faith; a trusted advisor of John Paul II the Great – the very epitome of continuity and forward motion! (Of course, he’ll tick off all the right people, and the more “camera time” he gets the more liberal teeth will be gnashed – I’ve heard many times how gentle, almost shy he is in person. I’ve heard his German is so soft it sounds like French.) More to the point, if the Prefect of the CDF can give us Dominum Iesus and the Responsum ad Dubium on the infallibility involved in the all-male priesthood… …what kind of Encyclicals are liable to flow from his mighty pen? …and what will the divine Liturgy look like ten years from now? …and, I, I need to chew on this for a few years. Praise the Lord Jesus Christ!
    • JeanneP:
      Viva Papa!!!!!
    • Patrick Coffin:
      Ever have the feeling of deja vu? Dom, your blog’s all weird today – I think it’s real happy.
    • Dennis Mahon:
      Today is the Feastday of St. Pope Leo the IX, also a German pope, and one of the originators of the Gregorian reform. Coincidence? I think not.
    • John Hearn:
      Smoke flies and bells ring, Hearts fly high on April’s wings, Joy his new name brings!
    • Meg Q:
      I’m also quite misty, and thankful, and shocked, though I sort-of thought he’d be elected. Just posted on my blog too – everyone must be posting right now, because it took a few minutes to accept. I thought that, after yesterday’s homily, if Ratzinger was elected, it would happen soon (as you say, Dom), and that the electors would be voting for him, not for a “caretaker” or anything like that. Last time they voted for a caretaker they elected Angelo Roncalli, aka John XXIII, and what did they get??? I also think he’ll be a media “superstar” in his own way. You saw today how mild and pleasant he looks and speaks, and he always is like that when addressing a group. He may not have the actor’s gifts that John Paul II (God bless him) had, but I think he’ll learn to “feed” on the crowds (that’s a good thing). And people will have such good will for him. Imagine what World Youth Day this summer will be like – and on familiar ground for him, in Cologne. I agree with Patrick – I can’t even begin to imagine what a Benedict papacy might bring us. But as John Hetman says, let us pray very much for him, he has a hard “job”. Everyone knows he tried to retire from the CDF at least 3 times but the pope would not accept his resignation. So, there goes his dream of retiring to teach theology in Bavaria. But praise be to God, Benedict accepted God’s call yet again. I think that, like John Paul, he is a unique man, fitted by God for our day.
    • tkozal:
      This is truly great. I fell to my knees with joy at the word “Joseph” from the proto-deacon. Another true intellectual giant as the head of the Church!
    • M. McC:
      Deo Gratias! God is still blessing us.
    • GOR:
      Yes…!!! Well that should put to bed the old saw that maintained “He who enters the Conclave a Pope, emerges a Cardinal…” Most pundits and news orgs, secular and religious (some of the latter, reluctantly) had him as the favorite. I was watching Telemundo which had a lay Hispanic professor of Theology and Philosophy from some Florida University who asserted that Benedict XVI would be a ‘divider’ not a ‘uniter’. Shades of Fr. McBrien who said recently on “60 Minutes” that Cdl. Ratzinger could not be elected as he would ‘polarize people’. Only if you are a dissenter, Father… I think JPII may have had an ‘ulterior motive’ in not letting him resign… Let’s pray for him. He will need all our prayers. Ad multos annos!
    • jrp:
      I’m amazed of all the blogs I’ve read where people also admit to crying with joy at the news. I didn’t think it was still possible.
    • JenB:
      We have Religious Education tonight, I love that all the 9th and 10th graders are all a buzz….one kids said “he looks fun”. Translated “I think I like him”. Hey, works for me!!
    • midwestmom:
      Kmac, According to Fr. Paris from Boston (didn’t we talk about him recently regarding Terri Schiavo?), he speculates that those who are unhappy with the election of Ratzinger are reaching in the medicine cabinet for Prozac as we speak. Chittister on Prozac. I like it.
    • AB:
      He is 78 years old and is probably seen by his peers as a transitional figure. I doubt much will change. Of course, one of the joys of Heaven will be watching the sufferings of the NY Times…..
    • Carrie:
      Will this finally silence the liberals for good? One can only hope.
    • Honeylou:
      I recently became a Catholic, and I decided to convert as a result of reading some of Cardinal Ratzinger’s writings. I was thinking of converting before I ever heard of Cardinal Ratzinger, but after reading some of his articles that are posted here on the internet, I basically knew I HAD to do this. It is the best thing I’ve ever done in my life too – thank you, Pope Benedict XVI !!
    • Domenico Bettinelli:
      The talk of Benedict as a transitional pope reminds me of the talk of John XXIII as transitional. I wouldn’t count him out so quickly. If he lived at least as long as John Paul II, we will have him for 7 years. And JP2 had Parkinson’s and suffered the after-effects of a gunshot wound…. and was in much worse shape at 78 than Benedict is at 78. Carrie, the liberals won’t be silenced, but their bleatings will be even more pointless and ineffective.