No fears for turmoil - Timaru priest

18:00, Feb 12 2013
pope's resignation
FR BRIAN FENNESSY: "I was surprised. I think he has personal insight that he is unable to be as effective as he would want to be. I like Pope Benedict he was very pastoral and gentle though a very strong theologian."
pope's resignation
PAULINE BERRY: "I was quite surprised. If he feels he can't carry on in his role then it is a sensible thing to do."
pope's resignation
RITA BURGESS: "It was a terrible shock and very unexpected. He was a wonderful pope."
pope's resignation
EILEEN KING: "I got a shock. He's been a good pope he kept on top of everything, but he's finding it difficult now."
pope's resignation
MAREE FARR: "It may bring new life into the religion."
pope's resignation
MAREE MCKENZIE: "He was a humble man. A new pope will give the church anew beginning it is a very important and complex organisation. Catholics appreciated the pope and his pastoral care of the church. His wisdom was appreciated by members of the universal church."
pope's resignation
COLLEEN MCKILLOP: "Has he [resigned]? I didn’t know."

Reaction to Pope Benedicts XVl's unexpected resignation today has been one of surprise and shock among Timaru Catholics.

Father Brian Fennessey of the Timaru Holy Family Parish, which includes Waimate, said he liked the Pope's gentleness.

He discounted predicted turmoil in the church due to this the first resignation in 600 years.

STANDING DOWN:  Pope Benedict will resign on February 28.
STANDING DOWN: Pope Benedict will resign on February 28.

Fears of tension between Pope Benedict seen as a conservative voice and a new pope who may be more liberal is unlikely to be an issue, he said.

''If a pope retires, he withdraws from the public scene and has no authority. The next pope appointed has governance.''

There is no New Zealand input into selection of a new pope as Cardinal Tom Williams Archbishop Emeritus of Wellington, who was part of Pope Benedict's conclave, is over 80 which is past the age threshold to be involved.

A new New Zealand cardinal is unlikely to be installed until Cardinal Williams dies.    

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The Timaru Herald