Francis and Benedict XVI. have a good relationship © dpa
Where does the pope live? How does he get along with his resigned predecessor? And how long does he actually want to remain in office himself? Many questions surrounding Francis. Answers he has already given himself.
Three years ago, Pope Francis was elected to head the Catholic Church. Since then, he's done some things differently than his predecessors – starting with housing. Questions and answers surrounding the pope "from the end of the world," as he described himself after the election.
Where does Francis live?
Since his election, the pope has been living in the Vatican's Santa Marta guesthouse, right next to St. Peter's Basilica. The former hospital, then pilgrim's home, was built under Pope John Paul II. (1978 – 2005) was converted into a hotel for Vatican guests and cardinals during the conclave, or election of the pope. Here Francis lives in Suite 201, a four-room apartment on the second floor. The traditional papal apartment in the Apostolic Palace high above St. Peter's Square was too large and too remote for him, Francis said at the time. He would rather be "among people". In Santa Marta, the Pope also frequently receives guests and regularly celebrates early Mass in the chapel of the guest house. However, he takes his meals at a separate table. He only visits the pope's apartment in the Apostolic Palace for the Angelus prayer on Sunday at noon.
Where has Francis already traveled?
He does not like to travel, Pope Francis said at the beginning of his pontificate. But soon there was not much of that anymore. In addition to numerous visits within Italy, Francis has made twelve trips abroad so far. On his program were Brazil, the Holy Land, South Korea, Albania, the European Parliament in Strasbourg, Turkey, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ecuador, Bolivia and Paraguay, Cuba, the United States, Kenya, Uganda, the Central African Republic, Cuba again and Mexico.
In this way, he meets his own demand that the church must go above all to the margins of the universal church. Core Europe has so far been left to the left. In July he visits the World Youth Day in Krakow. A papal trip to Germany, however, is not yet under discussion.
Is Francis a reformer? Does he change the church teaching on marriage and sexuality?
Francis calls for more mercy from the church toward anyone who lives a life that does not conform to its teachings. By this he also means remarried divorcees and homosexuals. This has left many hoping for changes in church teaching. So far, however, this has not happened. Rather, the pope has indicated that he believes more latitude is possible in specific individual cases, but not a fundamental change in doctrine. Francis' maxim so far seems to be: pastoral care comes before church teaching, deviations in individual cases are conceivable, but the principle is not shaken.
What is the relationship between Francis and Benedict XVI?.?
The relationship between the two is considered good and cordial. Francis regularly visits his resigned predecessor at his retirement residence in the Vatican Gardens, such as before trips abroad or on high feast days. Initial fears, Benedict XVI. could be instrumentalized by Francis' opponents as an anti-pope have not been confirmed. Benedict XVI. was like a wise grandfather to him, always there for him when he needed advice, Francis repeatedly described the relationship with his predecessor. Like Benedict XVI. What Cardinal Pell thinks about his successor remains his secret.
How long will Francis remain in office?
Two years ago, Francis, now 79, answered the question of how long his pontificate would likely last: "I have the feeling that my pontificate will be short. Four or five years."Francis has left no doubt that, like his predecessor Benedict XVI. would also resign. And that is when he would no longer be able, physically and spiritually, to fill his office. However, it is considered highly unlikely that Francis will be able to take over during the lifetime of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. could renounce his office.