Pope Francis’ Health Concerns and Plans for Resignation
Surgery was undertaken in 2021 for intestinal issues.
Pope Francis will celebrate his 86th birthday this Saturday and has recently experienced various health issues. In 2021, he underwent intestinal surgery, while for several months afterward used a wheelchair due to knee pain. More recently however he has been seen walking using only a cane instead.
In a Sunday interview, Pope Francis revealed the reason for his resignation letter submitted shortly after his election as Pope in 2013. It was to cover him in case his health would prevent him from fulfilling his duties effectively.Francis handed his letter over to Cardinal Tercisio Bertone who served at that time as Secretary of State at Vatican.
Pope Francis Approves of Cardinal Parolin Resignation Letter and Offer.
Pope Francis stated that Cardinal Pietro Parolin, currently in his No. 2 role at the Vatican, had provided written instructions. He clarified that the Secretary of State typically handled political and diplomatic responsibilities; in his resignation letter signed by Bertone in October 2013, Francis had only been pope for one month when Bertone made this move voluntarily citing medical or other motives.
Francis stated he was confident Bertone had sent the letter to Parolin, his current Secretary of State. Bertone had previously praised Pope Benedict XVI’s resignation due to age-related incapacitation; thus setting Francis up to become South America’s first pope.Francis had only recently become pope himself when Bertone submitted his letter of resignation in October 2013.