“After the walk, I go home, turn on the computer and find the email with a message from my friend who has long invited me to reflect on the impossibility of having a pope emeritus. I summarize it in simple terms (canonists, I apologize): since a consecration to a pope is not received, when a pope renounces his pontificate he cannot become pope emeritus, because he is no longer pope. He does not even become a cardinal again, but a bishop, and stop. Consequently Benedict XVI, with the renunciation of the ministerium but not of the munus (it would be to say the active exercise, but not the mandate) has done something that he could not do and therefore his renunciation is invalid. But if his renunciation is invalid, the conclave that followed it is also invalid, and also the pope who left that conclave.
My head is spinning. What if the friend was right?”