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Encyclopedia > Papal abdication

Papal abdication occurs in the Roman Catholic Church when the Pope resigns his office. The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the Christian Church whose visible head is the Pope, currently Pope Benedict XVI. It teaches that it is the one holy catholic and apostolic Church founded by Jesus Christ, and that the sole Church of Christ which in the... The pope is the Catholic Bishop and patriarch of Rome, and leader of the Catholic Church. ... A resignation occurs when a person holding a position gained by election or appointment steps down. ...

In 1294, Pope Celestine V promulgated a canon law explicitly establishing the right to resign the office of Pope, and did so himself after being in office only about five months. Before his election, he had lived as a hermit, and afterwards considered himself unworthy to fulfill the duties of the papacy. He lived some two years after his abdication. For broader historical context, see 1290s and 13th century. ... Saint Celestine V, né Pietro di Morrone (1215 - May 19, 1296) was pope in the year 1294. ... In Western culture, canon law is the law of the Roman Catholic and Anglican churches. ... The pope is the Catholic Bishop and patriarch of Rome, and leader of the Catholic Church. ... A hermit (from the Greek erēmos, signifying desert, uninhabited, hence desert-dweller) is a person who lives to some greater or lesser degree in seclusion and/or isolation from society. ... Abdication (from the Latin abdicatio, disowning, renouncing, from ab, from, and dicare, to declare, to proclaim as not belonging to one) is the act of renouncing and resigning from a formal office, especially from the supreme office of state. ...

Before Pope Celestine V, there were a few cases of abdication, although the details remain somewhat cloudy. Some scholars have suggested that Pope Marcellinus abdicated in 308 and Pope Liberius in 366; however, the details are uncertain. There are, however, several confirmed instances of papal abdication. Pope Benedict IX, who was accused of causing scandal by his disorderly life, abdicated in 1044 to join a monastery. Pope Gregory VI abdicated in 1046 in answer to (probably unfounded) charges of simony. Saint Marcellinus, Pope, according to the Liberian Catalogue, became bishop of Rome on June 30, 296; his predecessor was Pope Caius. ... Events November 11 - The Congress of Carnuntum: Attempting to keep peace within the Roman Empire, the leaders of the Tetrarchy declare Maxentius Augustus, and rival contender Constantine I is declared Caesar (junior emperor of Britain and Gaul) Births Deaths Categories: 308 ... Liberius, pope from May 17, 352 to September 24, 366, was the earliest pope who did not become a saint. ... Events January 2, Alamanni cross frozen Rhine in large numbers, invading Roman Empire October 1 - Pope Damasus I becomes Bishop of Rome. ... Benedict IX, né Theophylactus (c. ... Events King Anawrahta seizes the throne of Pagan, Myanmar Births Rodrigo Diaz de Vivar, known as The Cid (d. ... Gregory VI, né Johannes Gratianus, pope from 1045 to 1046, had earned a high reputation for learning and probity. ... // Events First contact between the Byzantine Empire and the Seljuks. ... Simony is the ecclesiastical crime and personal sin of paying for offices or positions in the hierarchy of a church, named after Simon Magus, who appears in the Acts of the Apostles 8:18-24. ...

The last pope to abdicate was Pope Gregory XII in 1409; he did so to end the Western Schism. At the time, there were three claimants to the papal throne, Roman Pope Gregory XII, Avignon Popes Benedict XIII, and Antipope John XXIII, successor of the election at the Council of Pisa. A council had convened at Constance to end the schism. Pope Gregory XII, the legitimate pope, sent legates to formally convoke the council, so that it would be a valid Ecumenical council, and to present his resignation of the office, thereby allowing the free election of a successor. Gregory XII, né Angelo Correr or Corraro (died October 18, 1417), pope from 1406 to 1415, succeeded Innocent VII on November 30, 1406, having been chosen at Rome by a conclave consisting of only fifteen cardinals, under the express condition that, should Benedict XIII, the rival pope at Avignon, renounce... Events January 1 - The Welsh surrender Harlech Castle to the English. ... Historical map of the Western Schism The Western Schism or Papal Schism (Also known as the Great Schism of Western Christianity) was a split within the Catholic Church in 1378. ... Antipope Felix V, the last historical Antipope. ... Antipope Benedict XIII, born Pedro Martínez de Luna, (b. ... Antipope John XXIII, antipope of the Pisan party (1410–1415), (about 1370 – November 22, 1419), was born as Baldassare Cossa. ... Pisas coat of arms This article is about Pisa in Italy. ... This article needs cleanup. ... In Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy, an ecumenical council or general council is a meeting of the bishops of the whole church convened to discuss and settle matters of Church doctrine and practice. ...

There have long been rumors that Pope John Paul II threatened to resign during the period of martial law in his native Poland, in order to lead the political opposition against the Communists' suppression of religious and other rights. In the years leading up to his death in 2005, many suggested that John Paul II ought to have abdicated due to his failing health. Vatican officials repeatedly quashed rumors of that possibility. Pope John Paul II (Latin: ), born Karol Józef Wojtyła (May 18, 1920 – April 2, 2005) reigned as pope of the Catholic Church for almost 27 years, from 16 October 1978, making his the second-longest pontificate (or the third-longest, as enumerated by Roman Catholic tradition). ... Martial law is the system of rules that takes effect (usually after a formal declaration) when a military authority takes control of the normal administration of justice. ... Communism refers to a theoretical system of social organization and a political movement based on common ownership of the means of production. ... 2005 (MMV) is a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Roman Curia is the complex of the organs and the authorities that constitute the administrative apparatus of the Holy See, coordinating and providing the necessary organisation for the correct functioning of the Roman Catholic Church and the achievement of its goals. ...

Abdication is considered dangerous by some Catholic thinkers, as it leaves open the possibility that those who dislike the new Pope will claim that there was a conspiracy to oust the old one and that the new Pope might therefore be an antipope. Also, as the Pope is believed to be the hand of God on Earth, resignation due to ill health could appear to be an affront to God, who has chosen not to take the person from the Earth as yet. Antipope Felix V, the last historical Antipope. ...

See also

Sede vacante in the canon law of the Roman Catholic Church is the vacancy of the episcopal see of a particular church. ... The Sistine Chapel is the location of the conclave. ...

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