+ Contact the Vocation Office to learn more about life as a monk at St. Vincent Archabbey 724.532.6655 +

February 28, 2013

Sede vacante

Sede vacante is an expression, used in the Canon Law of the Catholic Church, that refers to the vacancy of the Episcopal sea of a particular church. It is Latin  for "the seat being vacant", the seat in question being the Cathedra of the particular church. In most cases it is used in reference to the absence of a pope during the time of a Pope's death and the election of a new Supreme Pontiff. 

For the Election of a Pope
O God, eternal Shepherd,
who govern your flock with unfailing care,
grant in your boundless fatherly love
a pastor for your Church
who will please you by his holiness
and to us show watchful care.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever. Amen.

Pro Pontifice

Prayers for Benedict XVI
Pro Pontifice
V. Let us pray for our Sovereign Pontiff, Benedict XVI.
R. The Lord preserve him and give him life, and make
him blessed upon the earth, and deliver him not up to the will
of his enemies.

Almighty and everlasting God, have mercy upon thy servant Benedict XVI,
our Supreme Pontiff, and direct him, according to thy loving-kindness, in
the way of eternal salvation; that, of thy gift, he may ever desire that which
is pleasing unto thee and may accomplish it with all his might. Through Christ
our Lord. Amen. (Collection of Indulgences)

In Thanksgiving
O God, who in your wondrous providence chose your servant Pope Benedict XVI
to preside over your Church, we give you most hearty thanks for the years of his
faithful service, praying that, after having served as the Vicar of your Son on earth, he may
enjoy your abundant blessing in this life and, at life’s end, be received by your Son into eternal glory. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Pope Benedict XVI's final general audience

27-February-2013 -- Catholic News Agency

Pope Confident God Will Guide Church In Days Ahead

VATICAN CITY, February 27 (CNA/EWTN News) .- Pope Benedict XVI told the 150,000 people who came to his final general audience that he is filled with trust and peace as he prepares to resign, because the Church is not his but God's and he will "not let it sink."

"In this moment," the Pope said, "there is in me a great trust because I know, we all know, that the Word of truth of the Gospel is the strength of the Church, it is her life. ... This is my trust, this is my joy."

The Pope made his way through St. Peter's Square in his popemobile and was welcomed by cheering throngs of pilgrims from all over Europe and abroad.

"The heart of a Pope," he told the assembly, "reaches out to the entire world."

"I would like my greeting and my thanks to reach all people."

Benedict XVI will abdicate the chair of St. Peter on Feb. 28 and at that time the Church will be without a Pope.

His impending departure led the Pope to reflect on his last eight years as the successor of St. Peter, whom Jesus called to be a fisher of men.

"When, on April 19 of nearly eight years ago, I accepted to assume the Petrine Ministry, I had the firm certainty that has always accompanied me. In that moment, as I have already express many times, the words that resounded in my heart were 'Lord, what are you asking of me? This is a great burden that you place on my shoulders, but if You ask it of me, on your word I will throw out the nets, sure that you will guide me.'

"And the Lord has truly guided me, he has been close to me. I have been able to perceive his presence daily. It has been a piece of the path of the Church that has had moments of joy and light, but also moments that were not easy," the Pope told the crowd.

He also said he "felt like St. Peter and the Apostles in the boat on the Sea of Galilee.

"The Lord has given us so many days of sun and light wind, days in which the catch was abundant; there have also been moments in which the water were agitated and the wind blew contrary, as in all of the history of the Church, and the Lord appeared to be sleeping.

"But I have always known that in that boat, there was the Lord and I have always known that the barque of the Church is not mine, it is not ours, but it is his and he does not let it sink. It is Him who steers it, certainly also through the men he has chosen, because he has wanted it this way," the Pope stated.

Because God guides and protects the Church, Pope Benedict said that "today my heart is full of thanks to God because he has never made his consolation, his light, his love be absent from the entire Church or from me."

He also told the crowd that he carries "all of you in my prayer, in a present that is that of God, where I gather up every encounter, every trip, every pastoral visit.

"Everything and everyone, I gather up in prayer to entrust them to the Lord so that we might have full awareness of his will, with every wisdom and spiritual intelligence, and so that we may act in a way that is deserving of Him, of his love, bringing fruit in every good work."

Pope Benedict also demonstrated the depth of his pastoral heart by telling the sea of pilgrims that he "would like every person to feel loved by that God that gave his son for us and who has showed his boundless love for us. I would like everyone to feel the joy of being Christian."

He finished the main part of his remarks by saying, "in these last few months, I have felt my strength has diminished and I asked God insistently in prayer to illuminate me with his light to help me to make the most just decision not for my good but for the good of the Church."

"I took this step in full knowledge of its gravity and also novelty," he said, adding that it was also "with a profound serenity of soul."

"Loving the Church means also having the courage to make difficult and painful choices, keeping always the good of the Church at the fore and not our own," Pope Benedict stressed.

His final public audience as Pope will take place on Thursday evening, Feb. 28, at Castel Gandolfo.

The local mayor, parish priest, bishop and the faithful, will welcome Benedict XVI to his residence. After that, he will give one last speech from the window that overlooks the courtyard of the residence.

Pope Benedict XVI's final audience

27-February-2013 -- EWTNews Feature

Pope's final audience was bittersweet for cardinals

The cardinals and bishops who attended Pope Benedict XVI's last big public appearance made sure to show him their love and respect, but it was a hard moment as well.
"There was a touch of sadness as when one sees a person for the very last time," said Archbishop Rino Fisichella after the Pope's last general audience.
"Bishops and cardinals have shown a lot of respect, love and affection towards him here today," he told EWTN News Feb. 27.
Around 200,000 people from all over the world came to St. Peter's Square to see Pope Benedict for the last time before he steps down as Pope tomorrow evening.
Archbishop Fisichella, who is president of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of New Evangelization, said that the audience was important in two ways.
"The first is the great humanity of the Holy Father because he has spoken about his suffering in taking this decision, but it has also been a big experience of faith," the archbishop observed.
"The living Church embraces the Holy Father and manifests its love, but it's an experience of faith.
"We have the certainty that the Holy Spirit is with us, and so is the Holy Father with his resignation, but he is present among us with his prayer and his presence.
Archbishop Fisichella sees Pope Benedict's has given "a testimony of faith and big hope to the whole Church" during his papacy.
"With his testimony and his teaching, which has a very rich deepness, and with his live presence, prayer, and silence - which talks about true prayer that we need to give to God - he will continue to help the Year of Faith," he affirmed.

Pax et Gaudium

O.S.B. Vocation Awareness

O.S.B. Vocation Awareness