Pope says Church shouldn’t have ‘leaders for life’

Pope Francis has said the Catholic Church should not have “leaders for life” in its ranks.

Otherwise it would risk being like a country under a dictatorship, he told 30,000 people at a rally in St Peter’s Square on July 3.

“There should be a time limit to positions (in the Church), which in reality are positions of service,” the Pope said.

He made it clear that his comments were not confined to the clergy.

“Let’s be clear. The only one who cannot be substituted in the Church is the Holy Spirit,” he said.

But in an interview with a Mexican broadcaster earlier last year, Pope Francis rejected the idea of an automatic retirement age for popes.

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