Pope Francis didnt want to be a pope?

Why is pope francis a pope if he didnt want to be a pope in the first place?

Why would you think that the choice of a Pope is the choice solely of a man or men and not God?

His name wouldn’t have been added to the list of potential popes without his consent, would it? Does a Cardinal have to sign something/agree to have his name thrown into the ring, or does everyone just vote on the candidates without asking permission first?

Is it assumed that if someone is a Cardinal, they’d be open to being a pope?

I remember an interview with Francis’ sister at the time that he was named pope, saying her brother hadn’t really wanted to be pope. It was a very sweet interview, saying something to the effect that he was the kind of man who didn’t like too much attention and he like his pared down, simple ways, etc. But at his own insistence he’s brought a lot that life into this new one, as we have seen, from the very first minute he stepped out onto the balcony and was dressed down–so good for him.


Not necessarily. Any Cardinal, may vote any way. And one doesn’t necessarily need to be a Cardinal to become a Pope.

Again, not necessarily. The College of Cardinal’s responsibility is to elect a Pope.

Bishops are appointed to be Cardinals according to a discernment process when an appointment is made available. The Pope receives a list of prospective Bishop candidates and tries to discern by the help of the Holy Spirit of who would be best suited to the position.

Sometimes the best people to have in charge are those who didn’t seek the office. And why would he agree to be Pope? Well, it’s not about what we want, but what God wants.

It’s probably best that he didn’t want to be Pope. Careerism is bad but Papal careerism is probably the worst.

Peter didn’t have much say-so.

When God calls we are to obey. Pope Francis is a very humble man. The Holy Spirit speaks through the votes of the Cardinals.

Our God is so awesome.

If he didn’t want to be Pope, it’s just another sign of his intelligence, sanity, and humility.

It’s an extraordinarily difficult job with overwhelming responsibility.

I think Benedict didn’t want to be pope either.

Because the Holy Spirit picked him.

There’s a saying that the man who goes into the conclave wishing to be pope exits a Cardinal.

Basically meaning that the ones desiring the position are not the ones God chooses.

Why would anyone want to be the Pope? They don’t call the first room a Pope enters into to change into his new wardrobe after being elected the ‘crying room’ for nothing! What a terrible responsibility it would be! Pope Francis even said “God does not bless a person who wants to be Pope” in one of his early addresses; if you think about that it makes a lot of sense.

“It is a fearful thing to be
The Pope.
That cross will not be laid on me
I hope.
A righteous God would not permit
The Pope himself must often say
After the labours of the day
‘It is a fearful thing to be

  • “The Pope”, A. E. Housman. :slight_smile:

So…could he have said “No, I don’t want to do it,” after he was chosen?


As far as I know, the person elected can decline.

Pope Francis isn’t the first man to have been elected to the office when he would rather have continued as he was. But like the Prophets and even Jesus in Gethsemane, he submitted to what he perceived to be God’s will in the matter.

I think the fact that he’s not very comfortable with the usual trappings of the papacy has actually made him a wonderful pope so far.


Yes. After the vote, he is asked if he accepts the election. He is free to respond no. If so, votingcontinues.

Accepting the papacy doesn’t mean one necessarily desired it. His brother Cardinals asked him to do a service for the Church and he accepted. I think that’s probably been the attitude of most Popes: they are agreeing to do a service asked of them, rather than seeking out the power and prestige of the position (some Popes, unfortunately, have probably had this attitude as well).

Here’s some insight from Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI that should help give a fresh perspective.

[size=4]Popes Do Not Fall from the Sky

Holy Father, on April 16, 2005, your seventy-eighth birthday, you told your co-workers how much you were looking forward to your retirement. Three days later you were the leader of the universal Church with 1.2 billion members. Not exactly a project that one saves for his old age.

Actually I had expected finally to have some peace and quiet. The fact that I suddenly found myself facing this tremendous task was, as everybody knows, a shock for me. The responsibility is in fact enormous.
There was the moment when, as you later said, you felt just as if “a guillotine” were speeding down on you. *

Yes, the thought of the guillotine occurred to me: Now it falls down and hits you. I had been so sure that this office was not my calling, but that God would now grant me some peace and quiet after strenuous years. But then I could only say, explain to myself: God’s will is apparently otherwise, and something new and completely different is beginning for me. He will be with me.

  • In the so-called “room of tears” during a conclave three sets of robes lie waiting for the future Pope. One is long, one short, one middle-sized. What was going through your head in that room, in which so many new Pontiffs are said to have broken down? Does one wonder again here, at the very latest: Why me? What does God want of me? *

Actually at that moment one is first of all occupied by very practical, external things. One has to see how to deal with the robes and such. Moreover I knew that very soon I would have to say a few words out on the balcony, and I began to think about what I could say. Besides, even at the moment when it hit me, all I was able to say to the Lord was simply: “What are you doing with me? Now the responsibility is yours. You must lead me! I can’t do it. If you wanted me, then you must also help me!” In this sense, I stood, let us say, in an urgent dialogue relationship with the Lord: if he does the one thing he must also do the other.[/size]

Benedict XVI, Pope; Peter Seewald (2010-11-23). Light Of The World (Kindle Locations 189-205). Ignatius Press. Kindle Edition.

So was it bad that Pope Benedict “resigned” or “turned down” the position of being Pope? Its not what Benedict wants, but what God wants. Whos to say God didnt want Benedict to continue?

As another poster mentioned, “Peter didnt have much say so.” Could Peter have turned downthe position of being the first pope?

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