Pope Francis stated in an interview published on Thursday that the resignation of a pope shouldn’t become the norm inside the Catholic Church and that it isn’t “on my agenda.”
Francis acknowledged that he wrote a letter of resignation two months after being elected pope in 2013 in case he had more health issues that would prevent him from performing his duties.
Francis, 86, was quoted in the publication Civilta Cattolica as saying, “But, this does not in any way indicate that departing popes should become, let’s say, a ‘trend,’ or a normal thing.”
During a Q&A session with 82 Jesuits on February 2, the pope made the remarks. He was just in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Pope Francis referred to Benedict XVI’s sudden retirement in 2013, saying that the pope “had the bravery to do it since he did not feel up to continue owing to his health.”
I don’t currently have that on my agenda. Francis stated that he thought the pope’s office was “ad vitam,” which is Latin for “for life,” and that “historical tradition” was crucial.
Francis has previously stated that if his health requires it, he may resign.
His current health issues, which include persistent knee pain that requires him to use a wheelchair, have further fueled rumors that he may eventually step down.
Pope Francis brought up such rumor throughout the conversation.
On the other hand, if we are paying attention to the “chatter,” then we ought to elect a new pope every six months, he declared.