Charleston bishop reflects on time with Pope Benedict

Published: Feb. 11, 2013 at 10:38 PM EST|Updated: Feb. 11, 2013 at 11:39 PM EST
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CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Bishop Robert Guglielmone says during his time with Pope Benedict last May, he could see the toll his role was taking.

"During the meeting, Pope Benedict seemed physically tired. He wore the expression of an 85-year-old man dealing with his age."

In his announcement, the pope attributed his decision to his age saying he was unable to "adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to him." Bishop Guglielmone says despite the pope's health, he remembers a man energized about  technology in spreading Catholicism. He began tweeting in December.

"When we started talking about the use of modern technology, he just lit up and really became very excited about that and entered the conversation quite animatedly."

But, he believes with technology came more pressure.

"The demands of the present age and the constant speed in which so much happens because of technology, I think the role has changed"

Some parishioners say they will miss him and his teachings.

"I think the pope knows what he needs to know, and he does what is necessary for our church, and I'm proud of him," says Mary Wiseman, a parishioner. "He knows when it's necessary to step down and bring forth more, something new for us."

As far as a selecting a successor, the bishop says there's no telling who it could be.

"Neither John Paul nor Benedict were expected originally to be elected, so who knows where this is all going to go."