Future Portland archbishop stunned by pope's announcement - KPTV - FOX 12

Future Portland archbishop stunned by pope's announcement

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Pope Benedict XVI is stepping down as the head of the Catholic Church.  He made the surprise announcement from the Vatican on Monday morning.

FOX 12 talked to Bishop Alexander Sample after the pope made the announcement. Sample will become an Archbishop of Portland in April.

"I woke up quite stunned with the Holy Father's decision to step down," Sample said.

Pope Benedict XVI is nearly 86 and says his mind and body are no longer up to the job.

"Because of the circumstances in the world today, you need a more vigorous person with a strong mind and body to carry out this role," Sample told Fox12.

Sample has met Benedict on several occasions and says that the pontiff is the father who chose to transfer him to the Archdiocese of Portland.

"Having lived and ministered under his leadership, I will miss him very, very much," Sample said.

Benedict took over as Pope in 2005.

His successor will be chosen by the College of Cardinals after he steps down on Feb. 28.

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