A highly respected and much loved Geelong Catholic priest is Father Dillon who is often in the papers on social justice issues. This time he was asked for his opinions on the recent resignation of the pope. Here is the article in today's
POPE Benedict's shock resignation should usher in a new understanding of the role in the modern world, according to Geelong Catholic priest Fr Kevin Dillon.
The St Mary's parish priest said yesterday he hoped a cardinal with strong pastoral experience would become successor and that he believed the time might be right to consider limiting papal reigns to set periods.
"The capacity of us to communicate around the globe instantaneously is beyond what we even could have imagined, and with that the demands of the job both energy-wise and awareness-wise have taken a quantum leap," Fr Dillon said.
"I think Pope Benedict has recognised that in saying that no one of advanced age, even with an intellect as great as his, probably could be expected to manage that effectively.
"I'm hoping it may usher in a recognition that, due to the magnitude of the task and the leadership, no one can be expected to do it for an indefinite period.
"The next step might be, and it well might be up to the next pope to do this, to say we'll bring in a protocol whereby the task is there for six years or eight or 10.
"I think the actual resignation as such is a mammoth step and a very positive one indeed, recognising the reality of the world in which we live."
Pope Benedict, 85, stunned the world when became the first pope to resign in 600 years.
Fr Dillon said he had not studied potential successors but he held certain hopes.
"We need intellectual leadership and we need theological wisdom and we need biblical wisdom and so on but I think we're living in a world which is hurting on many levels and we're living in a church which is hurting on many levels," he said.
"Most of all we need someone who of himself truly understands the needs of ordinary people in today's world and that his ministry will really reflect that.
"I'd love to see someone there who really understood the passion of the human heart and the sort of burdens that people are carrying."