Canon Law does not allow for acceptance or rejection of a Pope’s resignation, only that he clearly declare his intent and avow he resigns freely, which Pope Benedict XVI did, on the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes. No doubt, he chose the date with deliberate intention.
Then, hours later, did God speak? Just before 6PM, the hour of the Angelus (6AM Angelus commemorates the Resurrection, noon commemorates Christ’s suffering and 6PM commemorates the Incarnation) — yes, just before 6PM, lightning struck the Dome of St. Peter’s. What does this mean? Did God say “yes?” Or did He say “no?” Canon Law is silent. It is certainly hard to say this is a “coincidence.” The BBC carried these pictures this morning. Go to www.weather.com to hear the report.