We have some breaking news this morning Pope Francis says that his predecessor Pope Benedict is quote very sick the leader of the Catholic Church asked for prayers for the former pontiff during his General audience earlier today and he didn’t give any other details the CBS News foreign correspondent Chris livesay is following this story for us from the.
Vatican so Chris what are we learning now are we learning any more about from the Vatican about Pope Benedict’s health yeah Deborah so the Vatican says that the that the former Pope Benedict is indeed suffering from what they’re calling a quote aggravation due to old age and that follows what you quoted earlier from Pope Francis who during his.
Weekly General audience went out of his way to ask people to please pray for the quote very sick pontiff and right after his General audience the Vatican says Pope Francis went to visit Pope Benedict in the monastery where he’s been staying ever since he resigned back in 2013. who don’t recall the resignation in 2013 bring us up to speed like why is that so.
Shocking to some so many people well it was so shocking because it simply hadn’t been done in more than 700 years at least not voluntarily so it completely caught people off guard who were used to having to elect a new pope only after the sitting Pope had died what do you do when a pope resigns and that question uh and the and the the.
Flurry surrounding it was only aggravated by the fact that Pope Benedict made that announcement in Latin so it took a long time for a lot of news agencies to pull out their old Latin dictionaries and and translate what he had said in a sort of throwaway matter-of-fact uh manner when he was when he was addressing uh uh cameras at.
The time so completely caught people off guard who um who were used to as I mentioned used to seeing popes uh die before we elected a new pope that that’s the feelings around that however started to change with Pope John Paul II and viewers might recall that that his his he was on his deathbed for a very long time he had an illness that was.
Protracted and so for the last few years of his papacy uh we were we were seeing Pope John Paul II slowly deteriorate on camera and this appeared to be something that Pope Benedict didn’t want to risk and indeed Pope Francis has said that he doesn’t want to risk that either that he’s also willing to resign if he finds himself in a similar situation it’s.
Interesting so Chris what does this mean now for Pope Francis do we what do we know about his health well that is a very good question I mean first of all as we mentioned uh if Pope Benedict dies we won’t have to have a conclave to elect a new pope because of course we already have Pope Francis who is serving but he’s mentioned several.
Times that he would be very happy to resign if all of a sudden his health didn’t allow him to perform his duties in fact earlier this month he revealed that he’s already written a resignation letter and had it ready since 2013 the year he became Pope in case he was ever incapacitated or if simply his medical condition didn’t allow him to perform.
His duties as pope now we should emphasize that Pope Benedict we’re being told right now is under control his health situation is under control rather and Pope Francis says that he also feels like he’s in good health but nevertheless he’s he suffered from his own health problems over the year over the years he he walks with with a limp.
Because of hip and knee pain that he’s been suffering and he is of course getting old Pope Benedict Was 85 years old when he resigned Pope Francis is 86. at Brady six I gotta say but you know it’s an important job so you have to have you know some some precautions and be prepared obviously so write that resignation letter hey Chris libsay at.
The Vatican we really appreciate all of your Insight thank you so much thank you