John Boehner: "Face the Nation" question helped me clarify decision to resign

John Boehner: Holy Spirit helped clarify my d... 00:39

Former House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, explained how he decided to resign in a video posted to Twitter Thursday, and he said a question from "Face the Nation" host John Dickerson helped him realize the motivation behind his decision.

Just two days after his surprise resignation announcement, and just three days after Pope Francis' historic address before a Joint Session of Congress, Boehner arrived at the CBS News Washington D.C. bureau for an interview on September 27.

"After I make my announcement...I went down and did 'Face the Nation,'" Boehner recalled in the video posted Thursday. "We went through all the questions, and why, and how. And we get to the second to last question, and Dickerson says, 'You know, the pope was there on you think the power of the Holy Spirit brought you to this decision?'"

"And I mumbled out some answer," Boehner continued. "But the question kept bothering me and bothering me...I thought about it Sunday. I thought about it Monday. I thought about it Tuesday."

"And then on Wednesday... Cardinal Wuerl [of the Washington Archdiocese] came to see me, brought me a gift commemorating the pope's visit," Boehner explained, "I asked Cardinal Wuerl, I said, 'Your eminence, you probably didn't see this news show on Sunday, but I did this news show. And the question was about the power of the Holy Spirit. And this question's been bothering me ever since.' And Cardinal Wuerl says, 'Well, John, you know we don't normally recognize the power of the Holy Spirit except in retrospect.'"

"And then instantly, all the dots lined up," Boehner said, making the sign of the cross.

Here's the full September 27 exchange between Boehner and Dickerson about the pope's visit, Boehner's resignation, and the Holy Spirit:

DICKERSON: There is a belief in the Catholic Church that the Holy Spirit can move us. Did it after [Pope Francis'] visit to make this decision for you?

BOEHNER: Well, I thought -- I think it helped clear the picture.

I never related one of these instances with the other. But, clearly, by Friday night, it was pretty obvious to me that, hey, I think it's time to do this.

DICKERSON: And so you woke up Friday morning and...

BOEHNER: Thursday night.

DICKERSON: Thursday night.

BOEHNER: Woke up Friday morning, walked up to Starbucks and back, and walked to at Pete's and back, my regular jaunts in the morning. And at, 7:45 Friday morning, I said, yes, it's time to do this.