Giovanna Chirri, a journalist who has covered the Vatican for twenty years, got the scoop of a lifetime when she was attending a consistory of cardinals. She explains that it consisted of liturgical and other things which the people would not be interested in. [Comment: Benedict in his last talk with the priests of Rome told the story of the Council from his point of view as an insider. He told the good priests that there was the Council of the Spirit and the Council of the Journalists. Is there any clearer indication that what interests the faithful in the pews and what interests the secular press is different?]
Suddenly the pope took a piece of paper and began reading in slow, clear Latin. Even some of the cardinals had trouble following what he had to say. [Comment: the state of the cardinals' Latin is not what it should be.] The journalists were lost. They had not been given an advanced text from which to write their stories. Ms. Chirri, in a semi panic, forced herself to remember her high school [gymnasium] Latin. As she came to realize what the pope was saying to the cardinals and as shock spread across their faces, she realized she was witnessing an event that had not occurred for hundreds of years: a pope was announcing his resignation.
Beachtung [warning]: the link taking you to the original story leads you to a German language website, online Focus.