The Spanish religious Adolfo Nicolas Pachon, the “Black Pope”, as known to the head of the Society of Jesus, resigned Tuesday 20.
This day, the Society said that later this year will convene a General Congregation in 2016, will meet to choose a kind of conclave’s successor Nicolas Pachon.
The order of the Jesuits for the first time in history that managed one of their own became maximum hierarch of the Catholic Church, Pope Francisco, besides having universities worldwide.
The Jesuits administered the Iberoamericana University and the Institute of Technology and Higher Studies (ITESO) in Guadalajara, Jalisco.
Father Nicholas, 78, said in a letter that his decision to retire has the blessing of Pope Francisco. The General of the Jesuits is the sole responsibility of the Church, together with the Roman Pontiff, is for life.
For office and his black cassock with the general of the Jesuits are colloquially termed as “black popes”. However, the internal regulations of the order provide for the possibility that general Fathers of the Society of Jesus may resign.
Nicholas’s predecessor as superior of the Jesuits, Dutch Peter-Hans Kolvenbach, resigned in 2008 to nearly 80 years and after almost a quarter century of wielding the helm of that order. Benedict XVI, then Pope, authorized retirement.
Indeed, the decision to resign as Nicholas “Black Pope” has fueled rumors that point to the possibility that, someday, the first Jesuit Francisco-pope in history-can also resign Roman pontiff and Carry and the path opened by Benedict XVI and general priests of the Society of Jesus.