February 18, 2021
By Clive Hammond
POPE BENEDICT was “pushed” into resigning as head of the Vatican church and “did not wish to go” before Pope Francis was installed as his successor, an author has told Express.co.uk.
The former pontiff resigned in 2013, with Benedict citing his declining health due to old age as the main factor behind the unprecedented move. His decision paved the way for Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio – who would be named Francis – to be elected as the new Vatican head, sparking optimism in some circles that a much needed modernisation programme to revitalise the Catholic church would be installed. Yet, uncertainty surrounding Benedict’s position was unearthed when Sebastian Gomes detailed how “leaks, scandal and a referential attitude among its most powerful administrators had crippled the Vatican” under Benedict’s stewardship.
Mr Gomes said “this internal crisis in the end broke Benedict’s back”.
Vatican author Lynda Telford told Express.co.uk that Benedict’s incapacity to handle major issues at the top of the church, including Catholic sex abuse scandals, had seen insiders feel a change at the top was needed.
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