Avalon faculty and students expressed surprise and amazement Tuesday over news that Pope Benedict XVI announced his resignation.
The Pope will resign on February 28th 8pm Roman time, this will mark the first time a pope has resigned in about 500 years.
Benedict defended his resignation, “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.”
Students and faulty alike expressed sorrow over the loss of a good pope, but were confident that Benedict knew what he was doing.
Avalon President Richard McPherson said, “I’m a little down about it actually, but I’m sure it’s the right thing to do.”
Still, The Avalon community rejoiced over Benedict’s reign even if they were sad to see him go.
Senior John Paul McPherson said, “He was incredibly wise and smart, a great leader.”
However, students and faculty disagreed over whether or not Benedict’s actions will set a precedent for future popes.
Teachers believed Benedict’s resignation would encourage future popes.
“The weight of the position is great and they are not easily swayed by what other popes did,” explained second grade teacher Istvan Teleki.
Gregory XII was the last pope to resign when he stepped down to resolve the Great Schism in 1415.
Benedict will spend time after his resignation in prayer at a former convent in the Vatican City.