BREAKING: Pope Benedict XVI Announces He Will “Resign” Effective the End of February – Video Report 2/11/13; UPDATED with Text of Resignation
BREAKING: Pope Benedict XVI has announced that he will “resign” as Pope effective the end of the month – February 28, 2013. Pope Benedict XVI is 85 years old, and has been Pope since April 2005. The news will come as a shock to the world’s Roman Catholics, as Pope Benedict will become the first Pope in nearly 600 years to resign – the last being Pope Gregory in 1415. Pope Benedict cited failing “strength” as the reason for this decision.
UPDATE 2/11/13, 7:42 AM: Below is the full text of his announcement, which he made to cardinals celebrating the naming of three new saints.
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 has become the first Roman Pontiff since Pope Gregory XII in 1415 to resign, saying he wi… seekingalpha.com/n/hikv— MarketCurrents (@MarketCurrents) February 11, 2013
Resignation of Pope Benedict XVI “came as a shock” nbcnews.to/XBOTKT— NBC News (@NBCNews) February 11, 2013
Pope Benedict XVI had been agonising over whether to step down for months, his brother has revealed. yhoo.it/11B8bq8— Yahoo! UK News (@YahooNewsUK) February 11, 2013