NICOLE WINFIELD and VICTOR L. SIMPSON
Associated Press

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February 12, 2013
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Pope stepping down Feb. 28

VATICAN CITY - With a few words in Latin, Pope Benedict XVI did what no pope has done in more than half a millennium, stunning the world by announcing his resignation Monday and leaving the already troubled Catholic Church to replace the leader of its 1 billion followers by Easter.

Not even his closest associates had advance word of the news, a bombshell that he dropped during a routine meeting of Vatican cardinals. And with no clear favorites to succeed him, another surprise likely awaits when the cardinals elect Benedict's successor next month.

"Without doubt this is a historic moment," …

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The Nevada Appeal Updated Feb 12, 2013 04:41AM Published Feb 12, 2013 04:40AM Copyright 2013 The Nevada Appeal. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.