I hope this isn’t a bad time. I have some big news and I wanted to share it with you sooner rather than later. An opportunity has come up, and I’ve decided to leave my position at the Vatican. I’ve had a wonderful experience being pope, and I am so glad I was able to work with such a terrific group of Cardinals. I’ve learned a lot and had some laughs, too.
But yes, the time has come for me to go. My sister has a house in Florida and she’s looking for a roommate. I wasn’t going to retire until I was dead (and even then I wanted to do some consulting work), but as you well know, plans don’t always work out the way we hope they will. I’m sure being a retiree in Florida will bring its own challenges and rewards, just like being the head of one of the world’s major religions.
I hope it’s not impertinent if I ask if you’ll be willing to write me a good reference down the line. Your word means a lot to a great number of people.
His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI
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