On Resignations and Lightning Strikes


On February 11, 2013 Pope Benedict XVI told a consistory of Cardinals that he would soon be resigning the papacy, becoming the first pope to do so in 600 years. Within hours of the announcement a bolt of lightning struck St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.

Some viewed this as a sign from above; divine intervention of sorts. Others dismissed the suggestion as utter nonsense. Looking back now, after four years of the Francis papacy, it would seem that the former idea isn’t so far fetched.

Writing of the resignation and that sad and surreal moment in the life of the Church, one archbishop who was there that day noted:

Within seconds it was clear what was happening. This was no ordinary address. He did not speak about the consistory and the soon-to-be saints, or a few changes in administration, or the anniversary of the Lateran treaties, or the end of the historic dispute with Italy. Instead, he made history. I felt my stomach turn over as I realised that here before us was something not seen for centuries: the voluntary resignation of the Roman Pontiff.

In many ways it seems that the Church has yet to regain her footing.

Within hours of Benedict’s announcement a heavy storm rolled into Rome. As noted by the UKs Met Office (which monitors meteorological activity), and reported by the BBC:

“Looking at the thunderstorm activity at the start of February, there seems to have been a lot more stormy activity in the area around Rome”…more than usual for the time of year.

Statistically St. Peter’s, with its location and great dome, stands a higher than usual chance of experiencing lightning strikes.

Having said that, it did not suffer another such occurrence until October 7, 2016 on the feast day for Our Lady of the Rosary, when the Church recalls Christian Europe’s defeat of the Ottoman Empire at the Battle of Lepanto.

In otherwords, while the risk of strikes are high for St. Peter’s, they are sill a rare occurrence.

Ultimately the significance of that announcement in February 2013 does not depend upon the lightning strike that followed. For those who have been paying attention over the last four years and who have the formation, integrity, and historic context to assess the machinations of the current papacy, the signs are clear.

Posted on February 11, 2017, in life and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 19 Comments.

  1. I have studied Church History. The signs are clear that Pope Francis is serving God and under His guidance.

  2. We could all say we “studied Church History”. I have also seen men who have definitely “studied it” in the formal definition, who are now the worst kind of apostates. Apparently, “study” is not an inoculation for faithfulness.

    The signs are most certainly not clear at all that the current Bishop of Rome is serving God and under His guidance. What on earth are your criteria, decimating the authentic faith? Disrupting 2000 years of apostolic continuity? Allowing obvious homosexuals to infiltrate St. Peter’s and use it as a bath house? Allowing said homosexuals to ghost-write apostolic exhortations that are nothing but thin excuses for heterodoxy and heresy? Attacking and persecuting men who are faithful shepherds and sons of the Church? Confusing and leading astray the flock for which he is ultimately responsible, and will be HELD accountable before God? Insulting them? Mocking them? Demonstrating he has the most juvenile and narcissistic personality traits by engaging in verbal warfare and petty vengeance with his supposed “enemies”?

    Which of these kinds of traits do you declare “clear signs” that this imposter, this poser, this heretic in brown shoes is “serving God and under His guidance”.

  3. Perhaps you are impressed by his admonitions to fill Europe and the entire West with Islam, whether or not they are avowed or active terrorists, it makes no difference to this globalist. He says little to nothing about the genocide of HIS OWN PEOPLE, Catholics, who are no longer here, who are dead, because of Islam in the Middle East. Yet this person admonishes, continues to admonish, people to take in the “refugees”. This lack of knowledge of history, this disgusting continuation of facilitating the invasion of hordes of Muslims into the West, is disgusting, and cannot be excused. He is a pope for God’s sake, if anyone should understand Islam and it’s history with Christians, HE should, but he continues to implore and even insult Christians who have rightfully said, enough. He insults them. How dare he.

    Or perhaps you enjoy his wink wink at homosexuality, his meet and greets with homosexual couples, his praise of the Italian woman Bunini, who admitted she herself may have committed 10,000 abortions in Italy alone! He called her “one of Italy’s GREATS”. Greats! Yes, she shall be great in Hell, and he will join her most likely. His responsibility is ASTOUNDING, and horrific.
    Or maybe you like him because he hates Catholicism and loves Protestantism, or any other church and faith besides our own. I guess there are any number of reasons a person would “like” him.
    So if an apostate is your idea of a great pope, no wonder you are happy.

  4. St Peter’s is struck by lightning on many occasions each year. And sometimes on more than one occasion on the one day, on days affected by winter storms. That is why it has a lightning rod securely fixed in place atop its dome!

    Indeed, the local professional photographer, Filippo Monteforte (of AFP), who took the picture used above, was well aware of this. That is why, after hearing of Pope Benedict’s resignation speech, he stood and patiently waited for more than two hours at St Peter’s in terrible weather, camera armed with a 50mm lens. And, hey presto, it did happen. Twice. The first was the most spectacular, but he missed it!

    Interviewed about his famous photograph, he said: “I took the picture from St. Peter’s Square while sheltered by the columns. It was icy cold and raining sheets. When the storm started, I thought that lightning might strike the rod, so I decided it was worth seeing whether – if it DID strike – I could get the shot at exactly the right moment. The first bolt was huge and lit up the sky, but unfortunately I missed it. I had better luck the second time, and was able to snap a couple of images of the dome illuminated by the bolt.”

    No “Divine displeasure” just Roman weather.

  5. One of the ‘attributes’ of the False Prophet of the Book of Revelation is that of bringing down fire from the sky. Lightning is included. This is according to ‘The Book of Destiny’ by Father Herman Bernard Kramer who studied the Book of Revelation for thirty years of his Priesthood. This book is a result of that study. The Book of Revelation is an inspired book of the Gospels, and, hence obligatory for Catholics to believe.

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