Citing health reasons, Pope Benedict announces he will resign

CNS photo/Paul Haring
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UPDATED 9:30 A.M. FEB. 11 VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Saying he no longer has the strength to exercise ministry over the universal church, Pope Benedict XVI announced Feb. 11 that he would be resigning at the end of the month after an eight-year pontificate. "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 pope told cardinals gathered for an ordinary public consistory to approve the canonization of new saints.

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