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Pope Benedict XVI Announces Resignation

By Alexandra Hill, WBGO News
February 11, 2013

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For the first time in nearly six hundred years a sitting Pope is voluntarily stepping down. Pope Benedict XVI announced this morning that he will resign from the office later this month, shocking Catholics around the world

The 85 year old Pope says he is just too old and too ill to carry out the extensive duties of the highest position in the Catholic Church. Father Pablo Gadenz Associate Professor of Biblical Studies at Seton Hall says though a Pope’s resignation is very rare, the church is well prepared to handle it.

“There are precedents for Pope’s resigning so devout Catholics around the world have no need to fear  this is something that is foreseen even in the church’s laws. “

120 Cardinals from around the world will gather at the Vatican next month to choose a successor. The last pope to resign was Pope Gregory XII, who stepped down in 1415.

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