The Vatican announced today the Pope is resigning. Pope Benedict XVI says his advanced age and deteriorating health were contributing factors to his decision.
The Pope will step down on February 28th. The last Pope to resign was Gregory XII nearly 600 years ago.
Bishop Kevin Rhoades of the Fort Wayne South Bend Diocese offered his reaction to the resignation stating, "I think Pope Benedict.. he's been pope for almost eight years and he's been I think a very loving shepherd of the Church."The 85 year-old Pope will not be involved in choosing a new Pope or guiding the Catholic Church after his resignation. Cardinals will convene at the Vatican after February 28th to select a new leader for the Catholic Church.