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Press Release: NETWORK Responds to Resignation of Pope Benedict

 FOR RELEASE: February 11, 2013                                                              CONTACT:  Stephanie Niedringhaus, 202-347-9797 x224,

Washington DC:  NETWORK, A National Catholic Social Justice lobby, today issued the following statement concerning the Obama administration’s newly proposed rules on contraception coverage:

Like much of the world, we were stunned by today’s announcement of the resignation of Pope Benedict. We were also grateful that he was humbly able to acknowledge that weakness made him unable to effectively lead the Church at this critical time.

While it is too early to speculate about what his lasting legacy will be, we believe that it will include some of his theological writings, including Caritas in Veritate. When it was published more than two years ago, we thanked him publicly for his words about poverty, hunger, justice for immigrants and ecological justice as critical issues to be addressed. We also praised his view that “justice is inseparable from charity and intrinsic to it” and “[t]o desire the common good and strive towards it is a requirement of justice and charity.”

At this time of transition, we are praying for the pope and for the Church as a whole. We pray especially that our leaders will effectively address current divisions within the Church. We believe that this can be accomplished most effectively through pastoral, compassionate leadership. For many of us, the Church is in need of healing on many levels. We have faith that