3 years ago
EDIT: My comment below has been wrongly seen as savouring Sede Vacantism. To make it clear: I do not accept Sede Vacantism. Amendments are with **. I have also struck out a sentence, but have left it in the comment. I must close by saying I wrote this comment whilst tired, which may have led to confusion as to what I was trying to communicate.
Unfortunately, Benedict's secretary, Georg Ganswein, in an interview stated that Benedict "enlarged" the papacy to allow an "active member" and a "contemplative member". Ganswein also stated that Benedict did not leave the Petrine Ministry. These remarks have never been refuted by the Vatican, although, I admit, neither have they been endorsed, as far as I am aware. **This unfortunately has led to confusion about the nature of the Papacy for some people**.
However, it does raise the question: how can the Petrine Ministry be "enlarged" to include two occupants? Other questions also arise, such as why does Benedict still wear white, live in the Vatican, is referred to as Pope Emeritus, etc., when none of his predecessors who resigned ever did that, and in the case of Celestine V, even left Rome to make sure that everyone knew they were no longer the Pope? Unfortunately, these questions have never been answered, and thus confusion remains, at least for me. **I am not here declaring Benedict's resignation invalid, or Francis' election to also be invalid, rather I am merely asking out of curiosity.**
Yet, I am no theologian nor am I competent to judge such weighty matters. If or until, by God's leave, a future Pontiff declares with full weight of his Office the true situation of our current circumstance, I will treat, **or rather I accept**, Francis as true and valid Pope, if for no other reason than out of charity for the unity of the Church, and not to be a stumbling block for others. Fortunately, we have more pressing issues at hand to keep my (our) mind thinking, like the Sex Abuse Apocalypse currently engulfing the Church Universal.