Former Bishop of Sioux City says pope looked 'great' last week - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

Former Bishop of Sioux City says pope looked 'great' last week

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© "I found the pope to be bright, very fine, looked great. Obviously, we had no notion at that time," said DiNardo. © "I found the pope to be bright, very fine, looked great. Obviously, we had no notion at that time," said DiNardo.
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KTIV) -

In a press conference Tuesday, former Sioux City Bishop and current Archbishop of the Galveston-Houston Diocese, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, joined the droves of Catholics "saddened" by Pope Benedict's Monday announcement to resign for health reasons.

DiNardo says it was a surprise, considering he saw a vibrant pope only last week. 

"I found the pope to be bright, very fine, looked great. Obviously, we had no notion at that time," said DiNardo.

Benedict will step aside February 28th. He says he's grown too weak to lead the 1.2 billion Roman Catholics, worldwide.

"In order to govern the barque of Saint Peter and proclaim the Gospel, 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," said Benedict.

DiNardo is a member the College of Cardinals, a group that will be searching for the pope's replacement. The process is called conclave. The college will convene, and elect, a baptized Roman Catholic male to lead the church. Since 1378, only cardinals have been chosen.

DiNardo says this is his first conclave and asks for prayers from the 1.3 million he oversees.

"May the Holy Spirit guide those efforts and may the prayers of the Mother of God assist us all in being in genuine communion with the Lord, with Peter, and with all the members of the church," said DiNardo.

The Vatican expects to have a new pope by the end of March.

The last pontiff to resign was Gregory the 12th in 1415. It was a time called the Western Schism, when two men simultaneously claimed to be pope.

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