Students and staff at Ave Maria University react to the Pope's resignation
AVE MARIA, Fla.-
The Catholic community is in shock after the Pope announced he is stepping down.
Pope Benedict XVI said he is not mentally or physically strong enough to handle his Papal duties. Ave Maria University President Jim Towey thinks it was the right decision.
"It was clear that he was slowing down, he's 85 years old those who have seen him recently have noticed, while his mind is as sharp as it was ten years ago, the body is starting to show signs of his age and it's a grueling schedule to be a Pope." Ave Maria University President Jim Towey said.
While everyone we talked to stands behind the Pope, some wonder if resignations will become a Papal trend.
"It'll be interesting to see how this will affect future Popes. Whether or not they'll feel comfortable to step down because they have failing health. I wonder if this will be the normal in the Catholic Church rather than continuing until they're dead." Jeremy Fortner said.
For now, Catholic Church members are looking toward the future.
" We're hoping to get someone who's strong and will continue to push our faith in a positive light." Dennis Grossklas said.
They said people will remember Pope Benedict's legacy and not his resignation.
"I think people are sad to see him go, he's been a great presence a great thinker these last 7 years as Pope. His ability to write and communicate the attraction of his words leaves us with a lasting affection for him." President Towey said.
The Pope's resignation becomes official at the end of the month and the Vatican Cardinals will elect a new pope by mid-March.