Pope Benedict's resignation during Lent is no coincidence according to a Vatican expert who thinks the timing was tied to the Church’s liturgical calendar, reports the Catholic News Agency.
"He did this at the beginning of Lent because he wanted to ensure that when we celebrate Easter with the risen Christ, we could have a new pontiff with the Lord's resurrection," said Paul Badde, the Rome correspondent for the German newspaper Die Welt.
"He did this within the framework of the Church year, not the secular year," said Badde.
Lent will begin with Ash Wednesday on Feb. 13 and Pope Benedict will give up his office 15 days later on Februry 28. This means the College of Cardinals will have exactly one month to choose the next Pope in time for Easter, which falls on March 31.
And according to the journalist, who first met Pope Benedict personally in the 1980s, this fact means it was more of a ''Catholic decision" than a ''German decision.''
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