tv Pope The Most Powerful Man in History CNN March 18, 2018 7:00pm-8:00pm PDT
breaking news this morning, pope benedict xvi has announced he is resigning. for the first time in 600 years, a pope is retiring. >> i was astonished when benedict resigned. it came completely out of the blue. >> benedict's resignation was an amazing thing. >> in the last 2,000 years, only four other popes have resigned. >> it was wonderfully, comically announced. they announced it at a papal audience in latin, and you had to see all around the room
anyone who understood what he was saying. it was an astonishing thing to do. >> it raises so many questions. what happens now? >> two weeks after benedict xvi's resignation, pope francis is elected. and the papal crown is handed from one man to the other. >> we have two popes, but only one is the pope. the problem with having two popes is that you have to decide who do you listen to? >> benedict was 85 when he resigned. he inherited the financial mess. he inherited the mess of sexual abuse. he inherited the administrative chaos. >> benedict resigned because he realized the problems were too great for him. >> it's not like other human institutions. it's created, we believe, by god. and this man is resigning from all of that.
>> for 2,000 years the legacy of saint peter has been a define office passed on from one pope to the next. but can two men hold the legitimate claim to one godly office? >> it's left us with this situation of a pope and an extra pope. and that's always going to change the nature of an institution. >> who's the real pope? >> in 2013 millions of people watch as benedict xvi peacefully hands the papacy over to pope francis. but in the past, two living men with claim to one legacy has resulted in nothing but chaos. >> the 10th and 11th centuries, if you've got two popes, you've got two factions. >> it's an extraordinary episode. >> benedict ix was a teenager,
he was the most eligible member of the powerful roman family that ruled the city of rome. they wanted him to be pope for their own financial gains, their own territorial supremacy. >> the papacy was the legal center of the western world. if a king needed a dispensation to marry his brother's wife, if people wanted to take possession of a local parish, they would have to get permission and pay a fee. at rome, you are enormously powerful, immense responsibility. >> but 19-year-old benedict has no interest in bureaucracy or public service. he is only interested in the privileges of power. >> benedict is someone who was clearly made pope in order to enrich his family on the secular side, not someone who had any sort of a spiritual authority,
even spiritual training. >> nepotism tended to produce a group of wealthy parasites who lived like grandese, who were also clergy. >> he was incompetent. he was morally compromised in many ways. >> benedict was up to his nk in robbery and murder. he was using his position to gain wealth at the expense of the people of rome. >> by the year 1044 the cardinals are fed up. they decide the church needs a real spiritual and political leader, something must be done. >> the holiest priest in rome came to him and said you need to step down for the good of the church. what can i give you? and made him some sort of offering. benedict ix sold the papacy
which is against the cannons. >> conclaves had not yet been invented. popes are chosen by brute force or nepotism. >> buying church power was the worst sin. the fact he sold the papacy in return for money was appalling to everyone. >> for the first time in recorded history, a pope resigns in exchange for money, which catapults the papacy into the world of dirty politics. >> the papacy becomes a poem in the politics of central italy. >> though the young public ces theoung cardinal's bride, this will be the last the wor hears of benedict ix. >> pope, the most powerful man in history is brought to you
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in 1044, after eight years of desecrating theapacy youn be cardinal's bribe to resign. >> they ganged up together and drove benedict out of the city. the roman people picked a new pope, and he took the name sylvester iii. >> just weeks after handing the papacy over the sylvester, the former pope benedict ix and his
family decide they want the throne back. >> and the awkward thing now is that there were two popes, and both of them were claiming to be the heir of st. peter. >> benedict, however, had a wealthier family than sylvester, his family rallied behind him, gave him an army, he marched back into rome and he drove sylvester iii out. >> you find yourself bewildered by this. and it's so far from the apostles or how any christian leader should be. but that was the way the church was. it's about spiritual power, uncomfortably mixed with worldly power. >> six months after accepting the cardinal's bribe to resign, benedict 9: benedict ix to -- he is
reinstated as pope. >> now their positions had reversed. benedict is in rome and sylvester iii is in exile. but they're both still claiming to be pope. >> benedict ix was the first pope that comes back and they have to dece who the real pope now? >> with rome's allegiances split between benedict and sylvester, the church faces a crisis of faith. how does one decide who holds the legacy of st. peter? the romans will not have long to figure it out. only one month into benedict ix's second papacy he complicates the matter even further. >> benedict then, in the way of impetuous young men, he decided he didn't want to be pope anymore. he had had enough. he wanted to get married. he handed the papacy over to his god father, and he became pope
gregory vi. then the really scandalous thing happened, benedict's lady love decided not to marry him after all, and he decided he wanted the papacy back. gregory vi said i'm the pope, and sylvester iii said don't forget about me. now we have three popes, and no one to declare which one the most legitimate. >> benedict's, sylvester's and gregory's factions all fight in the streets of rome over who is the rightful heir to papal throne. in the end, benedict's family wins again. >> benedict was pope three times in the end. >> after benedict's reign sends the church into a tail spin, the
spiritual foundation becomes -- >> in july of 1048 benedict ix is officially ousted once and for all. the cardinals decide the fairest way to consolidate papal power is to ignore sylvester and gregory's claims to the throne, clear the decks, and elect a new pope. >> one of the problems in the 11th century was there was no clear way of choosing a pope. >> it was an answer of frequently murder. bribery. and also relationship, the sons of popes sometimes became popes, choosing pope. it's very confused, and it's never a pretty sight. >> it's very clear that the office of the papacy can belong to whoever has the most military
might to enforce it. >> the cardinals realize they must solidify rules for papal elections. they convene in an effort to solve this problem once and for all. and the result becomes one of the most iconic symbols of the papacy. >> in the 12th century, cardinals who were senior clergy in rome made what they called a college. and after that cardinals would choose a pope in public. so that sort of regularized things. buturse you can always twist elections. >> aer nearly 200 years of corrupt public elections, what is known today as the conclave is designed. the word conclave, a latin term meaning with a key, signifies
the cardinals are locked to avoid the appearance of outside politics. as of 1274 papal leks aelection held in secret. >> the cardinals would be cut off from the world, enclosed, make their votes, vote again, there would be that famous white smoke at the end. >> for the last 700 years, papal elections have been held the same way. cardinals are locked in the vatican, and vote again and again until a two-thirds majority is achieved. >> and each round of balloting is burned so that nobody can see who voted for whom. that's what generates the smoke. >> in the middle ages cardinals added a damp straw to the burning ballots to create the black smoke, signifying that no
pope has been chosen. the white smoke that hails a n wade by burninghe paper alone. today, chemical compounds are added to the ballots to color the smoke. modern conclaves usually only last for a few days. but in the 13th century they could go on for months. >> in the 13th century bribery would be involved. the rivalries of kings, people were basically stone walling, filibustering. >> in 1292 the cardinals assemble to elect a new pope. warring factions cannot reach the two-thirds majority and the conclave goes on for a full two years. >> without the pope, rome was a mess.
robber gangs wanted to dominate the city, and to a great extent did. without the pope functioning as a sort of local king. >> the throne in shambles, and no end to the conclave in sight, it looks as if the resignation of one teenage pope may have unravelled st. peter's legacy for good. it's spring" sales event, where you will find great deals on award-winning suvs, that are sure to make you smile. with over 40 standard features and with america's best bumper-to-bumper transferable limited warranty. during the volkswagen spring sales event you can't help, but smile. do you know them? uh-uh. do you know them? uh-uh. it's the volkswagen "smile, it's spring" sales event. hurry in and you can get a $1000 bonus on new 2018 atlas or tiguan models. ♪
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in 1294 the cardinals are determined to renew the spiritual supremacy of the papacy by ecting a pe through theroper channels. warring factions are deadlocked, which has left rome without a leader and in dire shape. frustrated by the delay and state of rome, a hermit monk writes to the conclave. >> he was an example of these kinds of crazy guys live up a mountain, and live on beans, and read nothing but the gospel. >> he warns the cardinals that vengeance will fall on them if they continue the stalemate. taking his letter as a divine
sign, the cardinals decide to elect him pope. >> in the 13th century you had a great succession of reforming popes, politicians. but this is not how a pope should be. so what they did was elect a pope who was as unworldly as you could possibly hope for, a hermit. they called him celestine, the heavenly one. >> he does not want to be pope. he'd rather be off praying alone by elf.ms he goes to this papy reluctantly. he didn't exactly know what was going on. it's not clear how sharp mentally he was. >> celestine v was hopeless. >> he announces his retirement
after five months. >> during that five months, the french crown manipulated him to get all sorts of concessions and control of more power. the cardinals became increasingly alarmed. he was helped to retire by his successor who was a pro-roman pope, boniface viii. it was said he whispered through a hole in the pope's cell where he played and said he was the voice of god and told the pope to resign so he could be elected pope in his stead. >> he had made a vow to become a monk, simply living in retirement for the good of his health, the only pope who ever voluntarily did before benedict xvi. >> a couple years before pope benedict xvi resigns, pope benedict took a trip, and he laid his palium on the grave of
celestine v, and a year and a half later he resigned. >> but despite the peaceful -- when he resigned, because of the violence and instability surrounding the resignation of benedict ix 250 years earlier, the new pope must make sure that celestine is never heard from again. >> after celest ne retired and boniface became pope, he felt it was dangerous to have two living popes. >> you can't have another pope knocking about and threatening the pope. immediately after celestine leaves, boniface has him attacked and locked up.
>> he didn't want celestine talking to anybody, he didn't want him to be able to communicate with supporters, so essentially put him under house arrest to protect his legitimacy as pope. >> and so celestine dies in captivity. >> in the 13th century, however, a retired pope is not the only threat to a sitting pope's power. in a time when the lines between church and state are fluid, kings are just as threatening to papal power as previous popes. >> it was a bit of a problem as to who was in charge, was it the king or the pope? >> so much of the maneuvering and back and forthing and jousting that goes on with the papacy has to do with the fact
that it was in italy. italy is not a country yet. italy is basically up for grabs. the normans grab part of it. the franks grab part of it. the germans grab part of it. italy is always contested. if you're going to control any major part of italy, you have to get the pope on your side. >> you want to raise an army, you need the pope's blessing. >> because of the volatile nature of medieval european politics, the papacy becomes dependent on the surrounding monarchies for stability. >> he didn't have an army, nothing other than moral persuasion on his side. what we see the early popes doing are making these alliances with different secular leaders. >> at the end of the 13th century, the most powerful monarch in europe is king
phillip iv in france. he had manipulated pope celestine into giving him church money and land. the new pope boniface viii is not so easily manipulated. >> when boniface became pope, he positioned himself as the anti-france pope. so phillip iv and boniface had a very real clash of powers. boniface began to generate some very, very harsh language about the power of the papacy, here is a letter he wrote to phillip iv of france, he said, listen, son, literally that's how he begins it, son, god has set us over kings and kingdoms, let no one persuade you that you have
superiority. so it is this very explicit language that says the pope has control over the king. >> but king phillip has an agenda, and he does not intend to let one insubordinate pope stand in his way. we took legendary... and made it liberating. we took safe... made. we took teigt, and made it utterly irresistible. we took the most advanced e-class ever... and made the most exciting e-class ever. the 2018 e-class coupe and sedan. lease the e300 sedan for $569 a month at your local mercedes-benz dealer. mercedes-benz. the best or nothing. most people come to la with big dreams... we came with big appetites. with expedia one click gives you access to discounts on thousands of hotels, cars and things to do.
philip iv in france is determined to reassert his power over the papacy. with a new pope boniface viii is refusing to give in to the greedy monarch. >> philip iv comes to a time when war fair is brought by purchasing armies. he needs more and more money. >> the church is very wealthy. >> so when boniface dies, king philip ensures that a pope who will give him what he wants is elected. >> he expressed very clearly to the college of cardinals that he preferred this particular french candidate. it wasn't an easy election. but ultimately the french side was strong enough to win. >> the french prelate who takes
the name clemat v becomes the pope. philip asks them to come to france to crown him pope. >> the popes, of course, had been appointed in rome from the time of st. peter. >> king phillip of france has a powerful hold on clement v. he's a weak man and she's intimidated. >> he did whatever was asked. >> clement v promised philip a flatout portion of the church tithe. he signed off on the expulsion of jews as a danger to the church, in knowledge that the wealth was going to go to phillip. that's very blatant. >> by 1309 king philip has turned pope clement v into a
palm of the french crown. and in an attempt to cement his power, his would be the most notorious resignation by undermining its very foundation. >> peter is buried on the vatican hill, and st. peter's basilica is built over his tomb. popes are seen as inheriting that charisma, and in that role, standing in for the apostle. his tomb is the foundation charter for the papacy. >> the demands that clement leave st. peter in rome and move the papacy to -- >> the pope eventually will end up setting up quarters at
avignon. >> rather than being in a landscape where the pope could actually act as an independent power and make alliances with anyone that he chose, he was now firmly entrenched in one country, clearly under the control of the king. that was what warped the papacy. it's a little bit as though washington, d.c. suddenly upped and said, well, now, manhattan isheital of the entire united states. >>or the first time sin the invention of the concla,he one with true power over the church is not the one chosen by god, but a power by a monarch instead. >> it's a dream of all the great rulers of medieval europe to control the papacy. but philip actually got the papacy into france. once you've done that, the pope can become a puppet of what you want to get done. >> that is a moment for the
church that becomes very troubling. you're abdicating the seat of where the church is supposed to lie. if you leave the bones of peter behind and you're not moving them, you're moving to this other place, what you're saying is that maybe this isn't as important to the church as we had thought it was previously. now it becomes a really dangerous situation for holding together not just the papacy, but beliefs and tenets of the church. >> it cost religious authority throughout europe. but once the church becomes established in france, pope clement v finds that despite being hundreds of miles from the bones of st. peter, there are certain benefits to the new location. >> it was very clearly a time when they had given up their spiritual authority in order to enjoy material prosperity. the college of cardinals, which also became centered at avignon
after this, was notorious for let me ask y luxurious living. spending church money in order to take care of themselves. >> but the avignon papacy worked. it much more ctral to europe than the italian peninsula. it was efficient. it had a decent bureaucracy. there's actually a good case for the avignon pay pacy. it doesn't have the tomb of peter. what's the point of a pope who doesn't sit at the tomb of peter? >> despite being miles from the spiritual foundation of the papacy, pope clement v remains in france and continues to lead the church under king philip until they both die in 1314. the successor continues his papacy in avignon as does the
pope after him. >> the papacy was more or less captured by the king of france. for a long period of time it was completely the instrument of the french crown. and almost every cardinal who was appointed to the college of cardinals during this time was french. >> by 1347 it appears that the papacy has become an arm of the french crown for good. and with galaxy forever you can upgrade to the newest galaxy every year. it's like pre-ordering for the future. upgrades, every year? every year. upgrades, every year? every year. every year? every year. upgrades, every year? every year. upgrades, every year? yes, every year. how come no one's getting this? lease a samsung galaxy s9 and get a second on sprint. for people with hearing loss, and with galaxy forever, visit sprintrelay.com. always have the newest galaxy. music ends. hesumatra reserve told in the time it takes to brew your cup.
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in the mid-1360s, the papacy has left rome and been operating in avignon, france for almost 60 years. at this point the cardinals are almost all french, and have become accustomed to the luxurious lifestyle afforded to them as a thank you for the church's loyalty to the french crown. but outside the walls of the lush papal castle, the rest of europe is a wasteland, setting the stage for what will be the last papal resignation for 600 years. >> black death. this contagious, dreadful
disease, devastated europe. >> pretty much the entire population was wiped out. >> in the wake of the plague, the papacy is forced to reevaluate its role in europe and face dire conditions in the city it abandoned. >> with the absence of the papacy from rome -- keep of the city began to -- it's all going to france. law and order became very, very shaky. you have a rise in pickpockets and muggings because there's no king in rome. there's no emperor in rome. and now there's no pope in rome. >> the romans learned, somewhat reluctantly, that the city depended on the presence of the papacy to flourish, to become anything more than just a bit of a wreck. >> fed up with the sheltered
confines of avignon, urban v decides the papacy has lost sight of its spiritual purpose and must return to the bones of st. peter in rome. >> urban v, a reform minded pope is appalled by the luxury, he was appalled by the self-indulnce in avignon. he announced to cardinalst only at dinner rather than their usual ten-course banquet. it had increasingly become clear that the ability to act as a spiritual leader would be seriously compromised. he was convicted that the papacy needed to return to its home in rome. but it was not an easy transition. >> the cardinals had become used to their indulgent lifestyle in avignon and did not appreciate
the run downconditions in t con but gregory xi remained firm in the spiritual conviction that the papacy belongs at the tomb of st. peter. >> there's a lot of resent of them having to come down in the world, which shows what a cushioned, isolated existence they were living in avignon. you have a europe devastated by the flplague, the social structe has entirely changed. the primary concern of cardinals is they were not getting enough courses at dinner. the papacy has gotten so out of touch with what the church is supposed to be doing. >> when pope gregory xi dies in 1378 many of the cardinals prepare to move back to avignon. but the frustrated romans call
for a sign that the papacy has freed itself from the french crown and will return to the principles of the church they once knew. >> the roman population who were always very volatile, and who regularly intervened in papal elections, after a long string of french popes, were determined to have an italn pope. >> the conclave of 1378 is met with angry mobs of romans chanting outside the vatican, demanding a renewed papal and though the cardinals miss their extravagant french lifestyle, they worry what happens if the romans' demands are not met. >> so an italian pope, roman vi was elected. >> but he seems to have been unhinged by becoming a pope. instantly reveals himself to be
a megalomaniac locking up people who didn't agree with him. so instead of being a unifying figure, he becomes a symbol of divisi division. >> half of the cardinals stand behind the maniacal pope urban vi in rome while the other half panic and flee back to avignon where they elect another pope, clement vii. the once universal church is now split. catholics are torn between two different popes running two functioning church bureaucracies from two different places. >> there was an election of a pope, and some people didn't like that election, so some people say, we're going to set up a church someplace else. and so this becomes a very big battle. >> so in solving one problem, getting the pope back to rome,
you've created a much worse one. >> we went through a long period when there were always at least two different people claiming to be pope. >> this unprecedented break in the church is what catholics refer to as the western schism. >> you've got popes saying i am pope and some popes are classed as anti-popes because other people didn't recognize them. but who is the anti-pope, who is the real pope? >> for nearly 40 years the church is divided and catholics are forced to choose the true heir to st. peter's legacy. >> where is the place that we are centered? that needs to flow from the pope. what do you do if you have two popes? then it becomes a real problem for the church, and you've got to sort that out. >> this schism made a mockery of the whole idea of the pope and the vicar of christ being the
successor of peter. >> if there is one st. peter, he can only have one legacy held by only one man. two popes become a clear sign that the spiritual source of papal power has been abandoned. >> having two popes is impossible. it's shattering for christendom. reformers say we've got to do something about this. >> the future of the church hanging in the balance, in 1415, cardinals on both sides look for a solution. >> they convene a general unciltconstance and the pope's involved are summoned and are either deposed or invited to resign. >> both the roman pope, gregory xii and the avignon pope, benedict xii are forced to
resign. in 1415 pope gregory will be the last pope to leave the office alive until 2013 when pope benedict xvi makes a shocking announcement. it's the volksw, it's spring" sales event, where you will find great deals on award-winning suvs, that are sure to make you smile. with over 40 standard features and with america's best bumper-to-bumper transferable limited warranty. during the volkswagen spring sales event you can't help, but smile. do you know them? uh-uh. do you know them? uh-uh. it's the volkswagen "smile, it's spring" sales event. hurry in and you can get a $1000 bonus on new 2018 atlas or tiguan models.
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back in 1415. >> throughout the history of the catholic church, only four popes have ever resigned. when pope benedict xvi is the only one who has ever done it peacefully and of his own volition. but what does it mean to have two living popes? how can two men hold one legacy of st. peter? >> everyone was surprised. catholics were surprised, non-catholics were surprised. it was a strong contrast to john paul ii who insisted on remaining pope until his dying gasp. >> in 2005, after reigning for 27 years, pope john paul ii passed away after a long and public battle with parkinson's
disease. >> in a way, the acti of resignation is a devastating comment on the last three to six years of his predecessor. of flight in the face of the whole theology of the papacy as it devolved in modern time. the notion that john paul had propagated that the papacy was a cross which was laid on your shoulders and you could not shake it off, benedict said, well, it's a job, and if you can't do it, you should let somebody else try. >> by resigning in the face of old age, pope benedict xvi has made a clear statement about the divinity of the papal office. >> i think that was a reminder to everybody in any position of authority or power that it's not just about me. it's actually about am i being effective. am really serving the community and serving the church properly? >> what benedict did in
resigningas to make it easier for successive popes to say, i'm 80 years old. i'm not going to stay till i fall down dead in this office. that's thinking more legacy than anything else. >> alighting from the helicopter, francis then seeing his predecessor goes toward him to embrace him. this is a historic moment. >> there's not any kind of precedent. benedict's resignation really did do it voluntary and of his own vow. >> today pope benedict xvi lives in a quiet apartment in the vatican. he has passed the holy office peacefully down to pope francis, leaving the power struggles of the past behind. >> the biggest gift that ever happened to the papacy is pope benedict xvi resigning because he allowed the papacy not to
become a trap. >> in terms of looking to the future, as any pope begins to get older or begins to have any difficulties, the question of resignation will be on the horizon. >> frances has also talked about resigning, and you don't know how serious he is. he's a mischievous man, heensd g and he's got an agenda and he's an old man, he may want to see that agenda out first. but he maybe. he watched the lesson of pope john paul irki collapse into hopelessness. >> it would be interesting if popes said, i've done my bit. someone else can have a go. >> in announcing his voluntary retirement, pope benedict has shaken the fouation of the papacy. if pope francis retires as well,
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