Yesterday, when Pope Benedict XVI was elected was a bittersweet day for me. I have nothing against our new pope. I think that Cardinal Ratzinger did remarkably brave work for the Church while serving as the prefect for the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith. He was tireless in defending the truth which the Church teaches and he will be an excellent pope. He also seems a little less hard than I though he would be, which is somehting the secular media here in the USA did not seem to want to address. I watched a couple of broadcasts last night (6:30 and 11:00) and every station said he was old and conservative. I don't think that is the measure of this man.
But what is weird for me is that someone besides John Paul II could even be pope. You see, I'm 29 years old. I was almost 3 when JP2 was elected, so he was truly the only pope I ever knew.
All of this is rather like my grandfather dying, mourning him for 9 days, and then having my uncles elect a new grandfather for my family. All my life, I've been praying for God's servant, John Paul, so when I go to Mass next, to pray for His servant Benedict will be very strange.
I have to also say that I was surprised at how few votes it took to elect Benedict. I thought it would take a little longer and that the man emerging from behind the red curtain would be African or Latin.
None of this is to take away from Pope Benedict. I believe that God knows what he is doing and that Joseph Ratzinger was the best man for the job. Now we have to pray for him, becaus ehe just got the toughest job in the world. Viva il papa!