Pope resigns: 10 o'clock coverage
BATON ROUGE- Area Catholics and religious experts shared their thoughts on the news that the Pope has resigned.
"That period of mourning, that process of morning is really important for Catholics in that transition period. And without it we'll see how Catholics respond," said Michael Pasquier. Pasquier is a religious studies professor at LSU. He believes this could signal a greater focus on electing the next pope.
Possible candidates include:
- Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana
- Cardinal Leonardo Sandri of Argentina
- Cardinal Marc Ouellet of Canada
Cardinals will eventually select someone to lead the church, in secret 15 to 20 days after Pope Benedict XVI's resignation at the end of February.
It is the first time in some 600 years that a pope has resigned.
-Pope Marcellinus abdicated in 304 after complying with the Roman emperors order to make a sacrifice to the pagan gods.
-Pope Benedict the IX sold the position to his Godfather in 1045.
-Pope Celestine the V felt overwhelmed by the demands of the office and chose to step down in 1294 after only 5 months in office.
-Gregory the 12th stepped down to try to and end the schism in the church.