It’s interesting that Pope Benedict XVI has announced that he will resign effective the end of February because of his health when most of his predecessors have stuck it out to the bitter end. The last pope to step down was Gregory XII who was forced to abdicate in 1415 to end the Western Schism. At the time there were three popes: Pope Gregory XII, Antipope Benedict XIII at Avignon and Alexander V/John XXIII at Pisa. Apparently, it was a very messy and confusing situation.
After Pope Gregory’s abdication, he spent the rest of his life was spent in peaceful obscurity. (I like the sound of that.) With Pope Benedict XVI’s pending abdication, I have a few questions.
- What kind of severance package does he get?
- Will he still have Swiss Guards protecting him?
- Will he retain papal infallibility?
- Will he still be able to speak on behalf of God?
Inquiring minds want to known.