Pope Benedict XVI is the first pope to resign in 600 years due to old age and lack of good ability to pursue well in his job.
The Catholic Society at Kingston University expressed their opinions on the resignation of the Pope and spoke of their trust and faith in him.
Steffie-Grace Rosario, a KU civil engineering student said: “I was shocked and surprised at first as to why he resigned. After I heard about his illness and the fact that he is physically weak to continue his duties in the papal ministry, I do think he took a brave and right decision.”
Pope Benedict XVI will leave office on February 28 at the age of 85. He expressed that the main reasons of stepping down are due to no longer being able to carry out his tasks adequetly and lacking in strength in mind and body, which is necessary for the job of the pope.
Miss Rosario said: “I think when one isn’t fit to give it a 100% at what they do, then they should step down and let someone else who has the zeal for it take over.”
The possible successors
The moment Pope Benedict XVI announced his resignation, the public began to speculate who might be his successor. The popular possible successors look to be Peter Turkson, Marc Ouellet, Francis Arinze or Angelo Scola.
In particular Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana is seen to be the favourite. His biggest challenge as Pope would be to maintain orthodox Catholic doctrine while at the same time understanding how to apply it in a world that is ever changing.
Denza Gonsalves, president of KUSU Catholic Society spoke about her views on the Pope’s resignation and how she hopes a rightful Cardinal will be chosen for the job. She said: “I now regard him with greater respect because an ordinary person like me can never imagine giving up such a position.
“I will be praying for the Cardinals in conclave to elect a rightful new pope to take over the Catholic Church to build and lead its faithful.”
Helping the younger population
Pope Benedict XVI seemed to help many young people find faith and confidence in expressing religion. He visited England and Scotland on a four-day Papal visit in September 2010 which was a great memory for many people who believe in his faith.
Miss Gonsalves said: “I will forever look up to such a great man who deeply loved his young people and placed his full confidence in us to spread the Gospel to the ends of the earth. Our continued growth in faith to his teaching and love will be our parting gift to him and the Church in England will be all the richer for it.”