Pope Benedict XVI & Papal Transition

Copyright © 2013, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Washington, DC. All rights reserved. CNS photo/Paul Haring


On February 11, Pope Benedict XVI announced he will resign at the end of the month. It will take effect on Thursday, February 28. His resignation was a shock and surprise to many but does exemplify the Holy Father's love of the Church. In a statement released shortly after the announcement, Bishop Barbarito spoke of Pope Benedict's role as a true servant of God and the last time Bishop Barbarito saw Pope Benedict in Rome. To read the full statement, please click here


The Diocese of Palm Beach wishes to keep its Catholic family informed of the latest information on Pope Benedict’s resignation, his papacy and the conclave to select a new Pope. Below is information of interest, prayers and special links.


Pope Benedict’s Final Schedule

The Vatican has released the schedule of the last days of Pope Benedict XVI's papacy which include three public appearances, a meeting with the priests of Rome, Lenten spiritual exercises, and audiences with politicians and cardinals.


On February 27, Pope Benedict XVI will make his final papal general audience. Vatican radio is reporting that preparations are underway for the thousands that are expected to “flock” to St. Peter’s Square.


On February 28, at 5 p.m. (11 a.m. Eastern Standard Time), the Pope will quietly move to Castel Gandolfo, the summer residence of the Pope, where he will stay for approximately two months until the monastery in which he'll live during his retirement is ready. At 8 p.m. (2 p.m. Eastern Standard Time), the See of Peter will officially become vacant.


Special Masses for Pope Benedict XVI
Wednesday, Feb. 27
St. Martin de Porres in Jensen Beach - 5:30 p.m.

Thursday, Feb. 28
Cathedral of St. Ignatius Loyola in Palm Beach Gardens - Noon
Holy Cross in Indiantown - 7 p.m.
Mary Immaculate in West Palm Beach - 8 a.m.
St. Martin de Porres in Jensen Beach - 8:30 a.m.
St. Philip Benizi in Belle Glade - 8 a.m.

Friday, March 1
Saint Claire in North Palm Beach – 8 a.m.
(This will be a parish Mass in conjunction with the students of St. Clare Catholic School)

Sunday, March 3
Holy Cross in Indiantown - 7 p.m.


The Conclave

Preparations for the conclave of cardinals to elect Pope Benedict’s successor will begin on March 1. Right now, the conclave to elect the next Bishop of Rome could start between March 15 and 19, according to the director of the Holy See's Press Office. However, there is a possibility the conclave may actually start earlier. The Diocese of Palm Beach will continue to keep you posted.


To understand a conclave and the election of a new Pope, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has developed this one-page document that can also be used as a bulletin insert. To read the document, please click here for the English version and click here for the Spanish version.



The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has released related prayers. Catholic dioceses, parishes and schools have permission to download and reproduce these materials for free distribution. Printed copies of all of these resources may also be purchased from USCCB. For more information, visit the USCCB’s page at http://www.usccb.org/about/leadership/holy-see/pope-benedict-xvi/papal-transition-2013-graphics-downloads.cfm



Prayers for Pope Benedict XVI


Prayer for Pope Benedict XVI

O God, true shepherd of all the faithful,

look with kindness on your servant Pope Benedict XVI,

whom you set as head and shepherd of  Your Church.

We give you thanks for your grace at work in him

as he had led us by word and example:

in his teaching,

in his prayer and in his great love.

Grant him your strength in frailty,

comfort in sorrow,

and serenity amid the trials of this world;

and guide your Church,

built on the rock of Peter,

with the power of your Spirit as we continue on the path that leads to you.

Through Christ our Lord.



Copyright © 2013, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Washington, DC. All rights reserved.


Oración por el Papa Benedicto XVI

Oh Dios, verdadero pastor de todos los fieles,

mira con misericordia a tu siervo el

papa Benedicto XVI,

a quien estableciste como cabeza y pastor

de tu Iglesia.

Te agradecemos por tu gracia que obra en él,

pues nos ha conducido por la palabra y el ejemplo:

en su enseñanza, en su oración y en su gran amor.

Concédele tu fortaleza en la debilidad, consuelo

en la tristeza,

y serenidad en medio de las tribulaciones de

este mundo; y guía a tu Iglesia, edificada sobre la roca

de Pedro,

con el poder de tu Espíritu

mientras continuamos en el camino que

conduce a ti.

Por Jesucristo, nuestro Señor.


Copyright © 2013, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Washington, DC. All rights reserved.



Prayers for the Election of a New Pope


Prayer for the Election of a New 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.



Copyright © 2013, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Washington, DC. All rights reserved.


Oración para la Elección del Papa

Dios nuestro, tú que como

pastor eterno

conduces a tu grey con solicitud


concede a tu Iglesia un pontífice

que te agrade con su santidad de vida

y se consagre enteramente al servicio

de tu pueblo.

Por nuestro Señor Jesucristo, tu Hijo,

que vive y reina contigo en la

unidad del Espíritu Santo

y es Dios por los siglos de los siglos.


Copyright © 2013, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Washington, DC. All rights reserved.



Keep Informed

With the launch of its newly designed website late last year, the diocese provides live news feeds from Catholic News Service and Vatican News.


You can find the latest news on Pope Benedict XVI and the election of a new Pope by following Catholic News Service, Vatican News and the USCCB.


Other Related News Items and Links:

Frequently Asked Questions about Pope Benedict's Resignation and the Upcoming Conclave

Read the Full Text of Pope Benedict XVI's Statement 

USCCB President Cardinal Timothy Dolan's statement on the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI

For Parishes: Liturgical Resources for Papal Transition

Category Tag(s): 2013 Press Releases