In a prepared statement last week, God announced that he was relieving Pope Benedict XVI of his position as the head of the Roman Catholic Church. Citing a desire to reinvigorate and restore the image of the Church, the all powerful creator and proprietor of our universe wanted to take a strong stance on a number of recent issues.

“I appreciate the time and effort Joseph has given to the Church, but I feel that it’s time to move in a new direction,” said God. “A direction with less implicit racism and wild speculation about Islam.”

God noted that he would allow Benedict to step down gracefully and that we would be retained in a consulting role until a new, more modern Pontiff is selected.

“We’ve all enjoyed working with and getting to know Mr. Ratzinger, but he doesn’t fit with the image we’re trying to cultivate at the moment. This is not a unilateral decision – far from it. We, me and a chorus of angels, had a meeting to discuss our long term goals for the Church with Benedict. When he heard that we would like to redistribute most of the literal mountains of wealth stockpiled in the Vatican to the world’s needy, he acknowledged that it would be best if we parted ways.”

“This is an amicable separation, we wish him all the best in whatever field he moves to, and you can bet we wrote him a stellar recommendation letter citing his years of dedicated service. We just felt it was time for a change,” insisted God. “Plus there was the whole covering up sex abuse thing. That’s a fireable offense for pretty much any job. Actually, it’s insane that we left him in power as long as he did.” Sources indicate that other religions have been courting the Pope for his vast experience running a Fortune 500 religion.

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