Shocking! Pope Benedict XVI, 85, will resign on Feb. 28, his spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said. He’ll be the first Pope in nearly 600 years to step down.
Pope Benedict XVI will stand down as the leader of the Catholic church, because his strength is “no longer adequate to continue in office due to his advanced age.”
A Vatican spokesman said, “It’s taken us a bit by surprise. We’ve had to organize ourselves very quickly. We’ve had no warning of what the Pope was about to announce. The declaration is crystal clear and we need to go through it word by word. The Pope says that he looked in a personal way and had a deep moment of reflection to consider the mission that he had received from God.”
Pope Benedict XVI’s Statement Of Resignation:
I have convoked you to this Consistory, not only for the three canonizations, but also to communicate to you a decision of great importance for the life of the Church.
After having repeatedly examined my conscience before God, I have come to the certainty that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry.
I am well aware that this ministry, due to its essential spiritual nature, must be carried out not only with words and deeds, but no less with prayer and suffering.
However, in today’s world, subject to so many rapid changes and shaken by questions of deep relevance for the life of faith, in order to govern the bark of Saint Peter and proclaim the Gospel, both strength of mind and body are necessary, strength which in the last few months, has deteriorated in me to the extent that I have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to me.
For this reason, and well aware of the seriousness of this act, with full freedom I declare that I renounce the ministry of Bishop of Rome, Successor of Saint Peter, entrusted to me by the Cardinals on 19 April 2005, in such a way, that as from 28 February 2013, at 20:00 hours, the See of Rome, the See of Saint Peter, will be vacant and a Conclave to elect the new Supreme Pontiff will have to be convoked by those whose competence it is.
Dear Brothers, I thank you most sincerely for all the love and work with which you have supported me in my ministry and I ask pardon for all my defects.
And now, let us entrust the Holy Church to the care of Our Supreme Pastor, Our Lord Jesus Christ, and implore his holy Mother Mary, so that she may assist the Cardinal Fathers with her maternal solicitude, in electing a new Supreme Pontiff.
With regard to myself, I wish to also devotedly serve the Holy Church of God in the future through a life dedicated to prayer.
Pope Benedict XVI Makes History
Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger became Pope Benedict XVI when he took office in April 2005, when he was 78-years-old, after succeeding Pope John Paul II, according to CNN. Breaking ground in 2012, by becoming the first Pope to ever tweet, Pope Benedict XVI will also be the first Pope to resign in nearly 600 years. The last time this happened was when Pope Gregory XII left the position in 1415.
What do YOU think, HollywoodLifers? Why do you think the Pope is resigning?
— Chris Rogers
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