Benedictine Tanzania

Early missions to Tanzania include the Augustinians (1499), the Holy Ghost Fathers (1863), the White Fathers (1879) and the Benedictine Monks (1887). Including Protestant denominations, the Benedictine Tradition seems to be the leading voice for the Christian worldview in Tanzania. Having a Benedictine Pope gave many in Tanzania the hopes of positive attention from the Holy See. Who will be next? Will there be an African pontiff? — editor.

Pope Benedict XVI: What happens now?

The handout picture release by the Vatican press office on February 11, 2013 shows Pope Benedict XVI (C) attending an ordinary consistory at the Vatican the same day pope Benedict XVI announced he will resign on February 28, a Vatican spokesman told AFP, which will make him the first pope to do so in centuries.

The handout picture release by the Vatican press office on February 11, 2013 shows Pope Benedict XVI (C) attending an ordinary consistory at the Vatican the same day pope Benedict XVI announced he will resign on February 28, a Vatican spokesman told AFP, which will make him the first pope to do so in centuries.

Monday, 11 February 2013 23:55
By The Citizen Reporter and Agencies

Dar es Salaam/Rome. Pope Benedict XVI’s announcement yesterday that he will resign at the end of this month sent shock waves across the globe, leaving four unanswered questions.

Roman Catholics worldwide and people from various religious denominations could only speculate on why the Pope made what appeared to be an abrupt decision: Who was to succeed him, what next and when this happened last.

The 85-year-old pontiff said he no longer has the strength to carry out his papal duties. “After having repeatedly examined my conscience before God, I have come to the certainty that my strength, due to advanced age, is no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry,” he said, according to a statement released by the Vatican.

He said he was aware of the “seriousness” of his resignation, but did so in “full freedom.” The last pope to resign was Pope Gregory XII. He did so in 1415 in a deal to end the Great Western Schism among competing papal claimants.

Bagamoyo Parish has the honor of being the “Mother of all Parishes in East Africa.”

Bagamoyo Parish has the honor of being the “Mother of all Parishes in East Africa.”

Pope Benedict’s sudden announcement sets the stage for the Vatican to hold a conclave to elect a new pope by mid-March. There are several papal contenders in the wings but no obvious front-runner, according to Vatican watchers.

When Pope Benedict resigns on February 28, he will leave the office vacant. The process to choose a new leader of the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics will begin thereafter. Without the customary mourning period that follows the death of a pontiff, a meeting of the cardinals to elect his successor, called the conclave, could begin by mid-March.

Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi said Pope Benedict would continue to carry out his papal duties until February 28. A successor could probably be elected by Easter, which falls this year on March 31, he said, adding: “That date is not an announcement, but a hypothesis.”

Archbishop of Arusha, Josaphat Louis Lebulu

Archbishop of Arusha,
Josaphat Louis Lebulu

Certainly, there have been some remarkable shocks in the 2,000 years of the papacy, few more unexpected than the election of Karol Wojtyla as John Paul II in 1978.

But Joseph Ratzinger went into the conclave a favourite and emerged as Benedict XVI. Born Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger, Pope Benedict became the 265th pope after being elected by his fellow cardinals on April 19, 2005, at the age of 78. This followed the death of the popular John Paul II.

The ninth German pope and first in nearly 500 years, Benedict was ordained in 1951 and was a major figure at the Vatican for decades before his ascension.

Ratzinger chose the name Benedict, which comes from the Latin word meaning “the blessed”. This was in homage to Pope Benedict XV who served during World War I, and Saint Benedict of Nursia, who established the Benedictine monasteries.

Saint Augustine University of Tanzania

Saint Augustine University of Tanzania

During his papacy and in the years before, Benedict was a key figure in the church’s efforts to address widespread sexual abuse of children by priests.

In 2001, then-Cardinal Ratzinger convinced John Paul II to put together the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which he led. Hewas in charge of investigating cases and setting up the policy regarding what he termed “filth” in the church.

As a cardinal, Ratzinger pushed through important reforms. They included making Internet offences against children a violation covered by canon law, extending child abuse offences to include the sexual abuse of all people under 18, waiving of the statute of limitation and speeding the process of dismissing guilty priests.

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