Wow. Shocking news this morning, as word comes that Pope Benedict XVI will step down on February 28.

This was the pope’s most recent tweet.

Twitter is buzzing over the stunning news this morning, wondering what sparked the resignation.

There are some health concerns.

The Vatican has released the pope’s statement.

Full text of Pope’s declaration

Dear Brothers,

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.
From the Vatican, 10 February 2013


Twitchy will monitor this news and update with further developments.

Update: While disgusting cretins are spewing hate, most on Twitter are sending prayers and expressing their gratitude to the pope.

  • Bob Smooper

    He can now devote his time to solving the altar-boy rape endemic which has devastated the church.

    • Kingofthehill

      Id kind of expect to read that kind of post on twitter

    • TocksNedlog

      It’s cute how your (unintentional?) use of “endemic” rather than ‘epidemic’ makes you look like even MORE of an a-hole.

    • V the K

      Thanks for reaffirming the stereotype that leftists are mean, bitter, hateful people.

    • V the K

      Fact: A child is 100x more likely to be molested by a public school employee than a functionary of the Roman Catholic Church.

      The only reason public school teachers don’t get 100x the grief for their “endemic” (sic) sexual predation of children is because they are such reliable supporters of the Democrat party.

      Supporters of Gerry Studds, Bob Menendez, Gus Savage and Portland Mayor Sam Adams should probably STFU when it comes to slamming the Roman Catholic Church for abuses that happened 20-30 years ago.

    • NRPax

      And a good start with that would be getting rid of the gay pedophiles that join the priesthood.

  • Kingofthehill

    Im not really religious but I am glad its his choice and not some crazy scandal. Crazy this is the 1st time in 600yrs that a pope voluntarily stepped down. Shows real humility.

  • Chrissy the Hyphenated

    He’s 85, for goodness sake. The man deserves a rest.

    • Rulz

      I won’t object to that, but it’s NOT unusual for old Catholics clergy to be involved in the faith.

  • nc

    I’m not Catholic but I deeply respect Pope Benedict. This must have been an incredibly difficult decision. God bless him.

  • V the K

    If only senile politicians like Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi and Diane Feinstein would follow his example.

    • GaryTheBrave

      I think two of the three are Catholic.

      • waltermitty2012

        Only Nancy Pelosi and that’s in name only.

        • V the K

          Nancy is about as loyal to her Catholicism as Harry is to his Mormonism.

          The only thing Democrats really worship is power.

          • BeeKaaay

            Their true religion is Marxism.

          • Rulz

            Reid’s pro-life record might shock some, but his understanding of economics is horrible.

          • V the K

            Reid? Pro-Life? Rhetorically, maybe. Policy-wise, not so much:


          • Rulz

            I thought he had a low score from one of the pro-choice groups.

          • V the K

            If that is true, it is probably because Reid does that weaselly thing where he votes against the Pro-Choice position, but only after he makes sure the bill has enough votes to go through.

            Reid is a soulless Democrat automaton.

          • Rulz

            “It is probably because Reid does that weaselly thing where he votes against the Pro-Choice position, but only after he makes sure the bill has enough votes to go through.”

            Brilliant analysis!

            I had not thought of that.

      • BeeKaaay

        They’re CINO.

      • precursor

        Harry Reid is a MORMON in NAME ONLY….but John Kerry and Dick Durbin are also Catholic. . They should all be placed on term limits.

      • Rulz

        In name only, my friend.

  • Booker

    Thanks so much, Pope Benedict. I’m not Catholic, but I have high regard for people of faith who have the passion of their convictions. I had a feeling that his reign wouldn’t be long because of his age. My fear now is that because of the small tenure of this current pope, the conclave might choose a younger, more liberal minded pope — whose reign might be longer. What direction will the Catholic Church choose now? Will they choose more liberality at the expense of sound doctrine?

  • rivers

    Shocked and sad but his humility is a tremendous example to us all. God bless him.

  • BeeKaaay

    This is not good.

    • Rulz

      It depends on how you look at it, I suppose.

  • HARP2

    Obama is resigning?

    • Rulz

      If only!

      • Rulz

        Who would thumb down that?!

  • Raphael Gluck ツ

    I dont get it, My Synagogue rabbi is kvetching for 15 years that he has no “Koiach” – Strength and nobody listens! Happy and Healthy Retirement Pope Benedict!

  • BeeKaaay

    Pope resigns.

    Prayers pour in from people who have a heart.

    Leftwingwackos meanwhile are pouring in their hatred.