Originally Posted by Jasi
Funny to see how differently you guys in the US see things.
There is absolutely no doubt here in Italy that BXVI did not
abdicate because of whatever "secret report/documentary" you guys are babbling about.
(The alleged "sex scandal" is water under the bridge. Actually Ratzinger has been one of the most active Popes against pedophilia in the Church - which, with all due respect to actual victims and their suffering, remains a statistical nullity).
JPII was in the saddle, despite his illness, until he died... because everyone in the Vatican was with him and he could trust ALL of his cooperators.
This is probably not the case for BXVI; there is a very well-known clash between two factions in the Vatican, one which is faithful to Ratzinger (guided by the president of Italian Episcopes, cardinal Angelo Bagnasco) and one which is not (led by the Vatican State Secretary, cardinal Tarcisio Bertone).
This is the most common line of thought among vaticanists.
I am not saying I agree with it, but it seems reasonable.
Certainly much more than an HBO documentary
As concerns the next Conclave...
If the above interpretation of BXVI's abdication is correct, then it is to be expected that Ratzinger also did it so as to let his "faction" hold the keys to the elections.
(And no, Dolan is not really a strong candidate... no US cardinal really is, understandably).
Exactly. It's that old american thinking that they influence everything.
It does not mean anything to catholics around the world, let alone the Cardinals in the Vatican (some probably don't even know what HBO is).
Of couse I feel sorry for victims of those sick priests (and even one case is already a shame for the Church). But like you said, it's statistical nullity. 99% of priests have never been accused of anything.
Studies by Charol Shakeshaft commissioned by the United States Department of Education show that abuse in schools are 100 times worse than by priests.
Another study (became a book) by non Catholic Penn State Professor Philip Jenkins show that:
Statistically, of all the professions, Christian clergy are least likely to offend. Doctors, Farmers and Teachers are the professions most likely to abuse children–not clergy;
Among clergy offenders Catholic priests are least likely to offend.
But of course those won't get much press cause the anti-catholic bias is so big in some countries that you have people claiming Ratzinger was a Nazi (when even an anti-catholic like Bill Maher apologized for calling him a Nazi). Ratzinger like every german boy had to join the Hitler Youth and later join the army. He deserted and has never written or said anything pro nazism in his entire life (actuallu he has written against it several times).