Pope Francis assured that “the door is open” to his possible resignation to the pontificate. However, he noted that he hasn’t thought about that possibility yet, adding that it wouldn’t be “a catastrophe” anyway. It was during a press conference on the flight back to Rome from his six-day visit to Canada.
The Argentine Pontiff addressed this issue on several occasions during the press conference, as well as his physical limitations, due to the fact that he has to move in a Wheelchair due to a knee problem, which prevents him from walking and standing for a long time.
That is why he admitted, on this occasion, not standing as usual, but sitting in a chair in front of the journalists, that do not think you can continue “with the same pace of travel of before”.
“At my age and with this limitation I have to save my strength a little to be able to serve the Church” or “on the contrary, think about the possibility of push me aside“, he said during a press conference of more than 45 minutes after the hard day in which he traveled from Quebec to Iqualuit to meet with the Inuit population.
The Pope has denied on several occasions, especially after the insistent rumors about a possible resignation, that he has thought about the possibility of leaving office, but this Saturday he made it clear that is one of the future options following the example of Pope Benedict XVI, who resigned from the pontificate in February 2013, after assuring that he lacked the strength.
“The door is open and is one of the options, but so far I have not knocked on this door. I haven’t felt this possibility yet, but this doesn’t mean that I won’t start thinking about it tomorrow,” Francis said.
And he stressed that “it would not be something strange” or “a catastrophe”.
“You can change dadthere is no problem,” he added.
Francis also explained that any kind of decision will be “the will of the Lord.” “If the Lord tells you that you have to go to the corner, you go to the corner,” he pointed out and qualified “that hasn’t felt that call yet“.
Regarding his knee pain, he explained that although the doctors say he could have surgery, he will not do it because have a problem with anesthesia, since it affected him during the operation on the colon in July of last year and he still has “some effects”. “You don’t mess around with anesthesia and that’s why you think (the operation) isn’t convenient,” he said.
The Pontiff assured that will keep trying to travel “Because it is a way of being close to the people and it is a way of serving”, and that the trips to South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo are still pending, “but already next year”, he declared.
Regarding the possible trip to Ukraine, he reiterated that “he wants to go” but, he added: “We will see what I find when I get home”, referring to how the organization of the possible visit to kyiv proceeds, while he did confirm that he will be able to be in Kazakhstan “because it is a quiet trip” for the Congress on Religions to be held on September 14 and 15.