Pope Benedict made history when he announced his resignation, becoming the first pope to step down voluntarily in 600 years. In his wake, he left a bitterly divided Vatican mired in scandals. Is Benedict’s successor, Pope Francis, taming the forces that helped destroy Benedict’s papacy? Is he succeeding in lifting the church out of crisis? Nearly a year in the making, this special two-hour FRONTLINE goes inside the Vatican — one of the world’s most revered and mysterious institutions — to unravel the remarkable series of events that led to the resignation that shook the world. Through interviews with those at the very heart of what happened — cardinals, priests, convicted criminals, police, prosecutors and whistle-blowers — FRONTLINE gives a first-hand account of the final days of Benedict’s papacy and the current battle to set the church on a new path under Francis.
Frontline's "Secrets of the Vatican" airs on Thursday, February 27th at 7:00 p.m.