- Now the talking really begins
Pope Francis wanted frankness and openness and that is what he got. But there is also the sense that the real debate in the Church about marriage and families is only just starting
- Home News
- World News
- Parish Practice
- Letters Extra
- The living Spirit
- Pope calls for abolition of death penalty and life sentences and urges Catholics to campaign against them
- Former Irish safeguarding head attacks bishops’ ‘empty gestures’
- Myanmar Church educates voters to ensure credible election
- Vatican says Italian diocese facing investigation over alleged misbehaviour of priests
The King of Spain is to abdicate after nearly four decades on the throne.
Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy announced today that King Juan Carlos, 76, would retire “for personal reasons”. The King has recently undergone a series of hip operations.
King Juan Carlos’ popularity plummeted during the financial crisis and a recent poll by the Spanish newspaper El Mundo found that nearly two-thirds of Spaniards thought he should abdicate, associating him with the political and economic decisions that plunged the country into recession.
His son, Crown Prince Felipe, is heir to the throne.
King Juan Carlos had a private audience with Pope Francis in Rome on 28 April. He and his wife Queen Sofia attended the canonisation Masses for Saints John XXIII and John Paul II in Rome that weekend.
Above: King Juan Carlos waves before entering the White House for a private lunch with President Barack Obama in Washington on 17 February 2010. Photo: CNS photo/Jason Reed