Newport Reacts to Resignation of Pope Benedict XVI
The Vatican announces he will step down Feb. 28.
Pope Benedict XVI announced Monday that he will resign effective Feb. 28, the Associated Press is reporting.
According to the AP, the 85-year-old pontiff announced his decision in Latin during a meeting of Vatican cardinals Monday morning, citing his "advanced age and diminishing strength."
Here's how some Newport Patch users reacted to the news:
Julianne Milewski Gavan: Sounds like a scandal cover up to me. Pope is supposed be pope for life. Something is not right.
Donnie Post: If only those in the Congress had the good sense to do the same
Kath Connerton: Or, Maybe in good conscience he is refusing to cover up anything else?
Matthew Young: I don't feel like the world gave him a chance.....but nobody asked me
The pope, leader of more than a billion Roman Catholics worldwide, emphasized that the duties require "both strength of mind and body."
The decision makes Benedict the first pope to resign in nearly 600 years. The last pope to resign was Pope Gregory XII, who stepped down in 1415, according to the AP report.
Born Joseph Ratzinger, Pope Benedict XVI was chosen in 2005 at 78 to succeed the late Pope John Paul II.
A conclave could elect a new pope by mid-March, the AP reports.
Speculation already is bubbling up about contenders to replace him and from what part of the world the new pope will be selected.
The AP has identified several possible candidates, among them several relatively traditional choices from European countries as well as Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York. Others, including CBS This Morning, have speculated that contenders could come from Latin America or other regions of the world.
What are your thoughts on the Pope resigning? What did you think of his leadership?
Tell us in the comments below.