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Published February 11, 2013, 01:56 PM

Bismarck bishop surprised by Pope's resignation

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Bismarck says Pope Benedict XVI's announcement to resign is a testament to his "holiness and humility."

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Bismarck says Pope Benedict XVI's announcement to resign is a testament to his "holiness and humility."

The pope announced Monday that he will resign on Feb. 28. The 85-year-old said his advanced age undermines his ability. Benedict is the first pontiff to resign in nearly 600 years.

Bismarck Bishop David Kagan says he is both surprised and saddened by the announcement. Kagan had been appointed by Benedict. He says he understands the decision because the pope's schedule is quite grueling.

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