Term limit for the Pope


Like there is for some political positions, should there be a term limit for the Pope of the Roman Catholic Church?
Historically some Popes have served for a short period of time, while others have served for a long period of time. Pope Benedict retired and Francis became Pope.
What are your thoughts? Should there be a time limit, say five years or so?


God determines the Pope’s time limit. Couldn’t have a better one decide that.


No doubt, God determines everything, but I was thinking that a change ever so often would offer different church leaders from around the world to have a great influence on our great Roman Catholic Church.


The Pope’s not elected for a term, he’s elected for life. Presumably if he becomes unwell and unable to fulfill his duties, he will do like Pope Benedict did and retire.

I’m perfectly fine with God deciding how long a Pope will reign, and I personally like when they stay a long time because it adds some stability to the Church. It was very unnerving when Pope JPI passed away so quickly and then Pope JPII got shot not long after he took over. I was very glad Mother Mary protected Pope JPII and that he stayed around for such a long time and now is still with us as a saint.


Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI was a rare bird in that he resigned from the papacy. The Church is not one for fads or fashions (at least I feel it shouldn’t be). If the Holy Spirit names someone as Supreme Pontiff, then it’s not for diversity’s sake.

“We do not want, as the newspapers say, a Church that will move with the world. We want a Church that will move the world.”-G.K. Chesterton


During my lifetime there have been six Popes. They all have been terrific Pontiffs. But I wonder if the Church might not be better served if there were more over that period of time.


Quality over quantity.


True, but diversity can be a good thing.


Each Pope only serves one “term,” but it is until death or retirement, like a U.S. Supreme Court Justice (or a monarch, which he also is).

Given the Church’s extremely long-term view (to the extent that the United States and the principles on which it was built are still “new” things barely a tenth of the Church’s age), limiting a papal reign to less time than a U.S. President or one-term Senator gets seems like a bad idea. A mandatory retirement age would be more sensible, and even that would be impossible to enforce since the current Pope could just lift it.


The Catholic Church is NOT a Democracy. The choice of the Pope each time is led by the Holy Spirit.


Good grief, no. This isn’t a politician you’re talking about.


Ahh, what an interesting concept. Who do we think is at the head of the Catholic Church?
Does the way we elect politicians inspire you any confidence on how they run their countries? I am speaking at the planetary level. Please consider the whole planet in your answer.
The Pope rules over the whole Church, at least all the Churches that accept its authority. Do you think that the Church can change the Pope every 5 years and endure 2000 years of life?


But the Cardinals actually do the physical voting, correct?


I believe the Church is filled with good people. If every five years or so, a different person we’re to serve, I do not think it would hurt the Church. It might strengthen the Church.


Why can’t we have quality and quantity?


Theoretically, you can. But, in real life, the things of the best quality of their kind tend to be rare. Ultimately, it’s quality that counts, not whether everybody gets their turn.


Thank goodness.


Uh, nooo…


Yes they do but we believe that they are led by the Holy Spirit. NO ONE voted Peter out, he lived, he died and then someone was chosen to take his place as it has been since then and will be until the end of time.


If you had Popes cycling in there every 5 years, it might very well hurt the Church by encouraging factions in the Church to be jockeying for office.

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