LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Pope Benedict XVI announced his resignation Monday, sending shock-waves through the Southland’s Catholic community of five million.
“I think it’s better he would have stayed because I think he can do his job,” parishioner Rodelio Ardines said.
85-year-old Pope told senior church officials that he will be stepping down as Pontiff, a lifetime-appointed position, at 8 p.m. on Feb. 28, just eight years after taking office.
Benedict was elected to office after Pope John Paul II died in 2005.
“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,” the pontiff said in a statement published on the Vatican website.
Pope Benedict XVI is the first pontiff to step down from office in nearly 600 years. Pope Gregory XII resigned from office in 1415.
KNX 1070’s Claudia Peschiutta reports the announcement rocked much of the Catholic community in Southern California.