Pope's resignation saddens Minn. archbishop - New York News

Pope's resignation saddens Minn. archbishop

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) -

The archbishop of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis says he is surprised and saddened by Pope Benedict's resignation.

Archbishop John Nienstedt said, like Catholics around the world, he was surprised to learn the 85-year-old pope plans to resign for health reasons at the end of the month.

Nienstedt issued a statement Monday saying he is also saddened by the thought of losing Benedict's "strong leadership for the church."

Nienstedt was among bishops who met with Benedict last March. The archbishop said the pope's pastoral reflections about each of the bishops' dioceses -- and the Twin Cities archdiocese in particular -- "were insightful as well as inspirational."

At the daily mass held at the University of St. Thomas on Monday, Father David Smith talked about the pope's decision, adding that he is happy about it. 

"I thought for some time that it was what should happen," he admitted. "As Benedict said, 'Too weak to carry on the work.'"

Several parishioners told FOX 9 News they believe Benedit showed his wisdom with the decision, but many were shocked by the simple fact that he will become the first pontiff to step down in 600 years.

History professor Massimo Faggioli has become a nationally known expert on the pope and Catholicism, and he told FOX 9 News he sees a new opportunity ahead.

"We've never had this kind of situation, when the next conclave -- in a few weeks -- will elect a new pope knowing that the former pope is still alive," he explained. 

While Benedict won't be in the room debating the next Pope, Faggioli said he believes his influence will still be strong.

"I don't expect him to be campaigning for someone or endorsing someone ... but his spirit will be there and that's unprecedented," Faggioli said.

There are about 825,000 Catholics in the Twin Cities who care deeply about who will become the next pope, but Faggioli explained there are worldwide implications when it comes to selecting a new pope because the pontiff historically influences international relations and builds bridges between religious organizations.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Scenes for "Girls" to be shot as SUNY New Paltz

    Scenes for "Girls" to be shot as SUNY New Paltz

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 6:13 AM EDT2014-07-29 10:13:09 GMT
    Some scenes for the HBO series "Girls" will be shot at the State University of New York at New Paltz.  The series star and creator Lena Dunham will reportedly be directing scenes Tuesday afternoon on the campus 75 miles north of New York City.
    Some scenes for the HBO series "Girls" will be shot at the State University of New York at New Paltz.  The series star and creator Lena Dunham will reportedly be directing scenes Tuesday afternoon on the campus 75 miles north of New York City.
  • Pregnant woman says officer put her in choke hold

    Pregnant woman says officer put her in choke hold

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 5:57 AM EDT2014-07-29 09:57:51 GMT
    Back from vacation, Mayor Bill de Blasio is addressing the allegations of police choke holds. Standing next to his police commissioner and standing by him, de Blasio declared police community relations will improve by Bill Bratton's call for retraining of officers. The mayor did say that police choke holds are not acceptable.
    Back from vacation, Mayor Bill de Blasio is addressing the allegations of police choke holds. Standing next to his police commissioner and standing by him, de Blasio declared police community relations will improve by Bill Bratton's call for retraining of officers. The mayor did say that police choke holds are not acceptable.
  • SummerStage: you still have time to catch a show

    SummerStage: you still have time to catch a show

    Monday, July 28 2014 10:22 PM EDT2014-07-29 02:22:53 GMT
    You've got a few more weeks to enjoy SummerStage, New York's annual performing arts showcase that's 28 years running. But it's not just music: there is dance, comedy, theater, you name it. There are several shows weekly at 14 different parks throughout the five boroughs. A recent show at Rumsey Playfield in Central Park paid tribute to Pete Seeger. Most of the shows are free and are funded by tickets purchased for the some of the bigger acts.
    You've got a few more weeks to enjoy SummerStage, New York's annual performing arts showcase that's 28 years running. But it's not just music: there is dance, comedy, theater, you name it. There are several shows weekly at 14 different parks throughout the five boroughs. A recent show at Rumsey Playfield in Central Park paid tribute to Pete Seeger. Most of the shows are free and are funded by tickets purchased for the some of the bigger acts.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices