Cathedral holds special Mass in honor of Pope Benedict XVI
Syracuse (WSYR-TV) – Catholics throughout the world honored the Church’s top cleric as his reign as pope came to a close on Thursday.
Catholics in Central New York joined the world in celebrating Pope Benedict XVI, who announced earlier in the month that he would resign on Feb. 28 – the first time a pontiff has resigned in nearly 600 years.
Syracuse Bishop Robert Cunningham said that such events give the Church an opportunity for more exposure to the wider world and for Catholics to reflect on their faith.
"Events like this give us a greater avenue of publicity and I would hope that our Catholic people hearing more about the pope at this time and other people of goodwill would be turned a little closer to the lord,” the bishop said.
The pope gave his final goodbye upon leaving The Vatican late Thursday morning.
The bishop says the day-to-day work of the Church will continue during the time of transition. The Papal Conclave in which the College of Cardinals gathers to select a new pope will begin.
“The work of the Church goes on. Whether there's a pope or a bishop, the work of the church goes on. We're still educating our young. We're caring for our sick. We're reaching out to serve people who are in need. So the day to day operations of the church will continue,” Bishop Cunningham said.
A special Mass in honor of Pope Benedict XVI was held at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Downtown Syracuse.
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