When the new pope meets the old pope: Awkward?

Print More
(Left) Pope Benedict photo by Gregory A. Shemitz, (right) Pope Francis photo by Andrea Sabbadini.

(Left) Pope Benedict photo by Gregory A. Shemitz, (right) Pope Francis photo by Andrea Sabbadini.

Active RNS subscribers and members can view this content by logging-in here.

(RNS) Now that Pope Francis has been duly installed, his next order of business is doing something no other pope has had to do in centuries: pay homage to the guy he replaced.

  • Mervin

    Having two Popes is indeed very intriguing. Benedict still hanging around the Vatican while a new cat is in power doesn’t make sense. There must be a little more to this intricate play of power they feel they have in the world. Is it not a religion? Does it have any sort of influence in secular life? Does the government act within or without demands or influences the church may want to offer.

  • Jack

    There is no problem with having Benedict “around” and David Gibson as well as the other hack, pseudo catholic “writers know it!! Hans Kung is no source to pay attention to. Af ter all, the man is a heretic who has somehoe hung on as a “priest in good standing” but who would have been excommuinicated on his ear by a great pope like St. Pius X. Kung questions so many core Catholic doctrines that he really isn’t catholic at all. Gibson’s job is to sell controversy. There will be no discord between Pope Francis and the former pope Benedict. Bendict is a peaceful man and Francis is too but he is also a decisive leader and spokeman. Stop giving credence to these controversy mongerers like hack writer David Gibson…Is he really Catholic???

  • doug

    i agree with jack. reading the article alerted to me that everything said was not straight. then i goggled the author david gibson. i think he is writing to sensationalize not imform.

  • Lori

    Oh, no! Here we go again, more pope bashing by Hans Kung and others. Both Benedict and Francis are humble men who want to serve the Church. Benedict understands who is in charge and Francis understands that in some matters he will benefit from consulting Benedict. Neither of these men have a fraction of the ego that Hans Kung has. Kung imagines that there will be tremendous problems because if he were in the position of one of these two men, there would, in fact, be problems. Also, I might add that Benedict made a humble and courageous sacrifice for the good of the Church, not out of laziness. It is believed that he felt that another would be more energetic and in a better position to make a few needed reforms. Francis now has the perfect opportunity to make replacements in the curia that would have been more difficult to make by Benedict. Francis is very intelligent and has managed his previous offices well. An intelligent and humble man will make use of his resources including Benedict. He has also been shown to act quite independently but within the proper biblical and doctrinal contexts and I imagine that Benedict will be supportive. The Holy Spirit chose Benedict for his mission as pope and now Francis has his.

  • sherry

    You guys are desperate to stir up some controversy. Pathetic, Hans Kung, doubly pathetic!

  • John Kirk

    Just so, Jack! Why ANYONE would regard Hans Kung as a referent to the Catholic Church is beyond me! And as for Gibson…this is no more intolerable (and it DOES have a prededent) than a bishop or archbishop emeritus living out their lives in the diocese from which they are retired. They are still regarded as what they are, bishops; they still dress as bishops, they are still addressed as “Your Excellency” or “Your Grace.” It’s no big deal. Rachet down the shrill drama.

  • priscilla taylor

    I continue to be amazed at the ridiculous things people come up with. Anyone who has spent time with those who are elderly and frail know that power struggles are the furthest things from their minds. Benedict will pray and draw down the heavenly strength this new pope needs to handle the scoundrels within and without the church. Benedict is a very brave man; I hope he lives for many more years.

  • Anita

    Why is it that the media people always have to make some controversy out of every subject, including the Pope. The Pope Emeritus said specifically, that he had no intention of interfering in the new Pope’s ministry or life. They knew each other for many years and are friends visiting with each other. If Benedict, as a friend, has anything to share, privately, with Pope Francis that might be beneficial to his position, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. Kung has always been a dissident and needs to put a “zipper” on his mouth and mind his own business.

  • SG

    This is such a non-issue. Many, many dioceses worldwide have a bishop and bishop emeritus and, maybe with the current exception in LA, it works fine. Washington has Cardinal Wuerl, Cardinal McCarrick and Cardinal Baum. They all are referred to as His Eminence or Cardinal, they all live in Washington and they all wear cardinal red, but everyone knows who is the archbishop and who are the archbishops emeritus. Can’t imagine why it would be different just because the guys wear white.