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VATICAN CITY, DECEMBER 12, 2012, SOURCE: AFPTV - Arrival of Pope BERLIN, FEBRUARY 11, 2013, SOURCE: German Chancellery *NO RESALE - FOR NON EDITORIAL PURPOSES* SOUNDBITE 1 Angela Merkel (woman), German Chancellor (German, 29 secs): "When Joseph Ratzinger was elected Pope eight years ago, we as Germans were proud of our compatriot, the first in a century to be elected as pope. If the pope himself, after mature consideration, has come to the conclusion that he does not have the strength to carry out his office, that has my greatest respect." HAVANA, March 28, 2012, Source: ICRT - VAR pope in popemobile ROME, MAY 1, 2011, SOURCE: TELEPACE - VAR Pope Benedict celebrating mass PARIS, FEBRUARY 11, 2013, SOURCE: POOL **NO RESALE - FOR NON EDITORIAL PURPOSES** SOUNDBITE 1 François Hollande (man), French President (French, 10 secs): "The decision of Benedict XVI raised the greatest respect. This is a courageous and exceptional decision." SOUNDBITE 2 François Hollande (man), French President (French, 10 secs): "We must leave the Catholic Church to determine how will they organize his succession. We will not be presenting a candidate ourselves [smile]." ROME, DECEMBER 24, 2011, SOURCE: TELEPACE - VAR pope giving midnight mass SHOTLIST: NEW YORK, NEW YORK, FEBRUARY 11, 2013 (SOURCE: CBS) **RESTRICTIONS: NO RESALE for non-editorial purposes No Japan No Free over the air broadcasters in Australia No US cable news outlets, free over the air networks or stations, their websites and their mobile phone services - Dolan greeting reporters SOUNDBITE 1Timothy Dolan (man) New York Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church (English, 27 sec): "Once again, I figured, well, he knows he's getting a little wobbly. When you watch the pope in action -- any pope, not just Benedict the 16th, but any pope, I've been able to watch Pope Paul the Sixth when I was a seminarian, John-Paul the Second, Benedict the 16th -- when you watch a Pope in action, you know that he's constantly surrounded by people who are really pushing at him, just to see him, to whisper something, a request for prayer into his ear. So you're kind of jostled all the time." ROME, APRIL 19, 2005, SOURCE: TELEPACE - pope appearing on balcony ------------------------------------------ AFP TEXT STORY: Vatican-religion-pope-US-bishops Pope's resignation shows 'great care' for church: US bishops WASHINGTON, Feb 11, 2013 (AFP) - The US conference of Roman Catholic bishops saluted Pope Benedict XVI's surprise decision to resign as "another sign of his great care for the Church." "We are sad that he will be resigning but grateful for his eight years of selfless leadership as successor of St Peter," said Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York, the president of the conference. The 85-year-old pontiff stunned Catholics Monday by announcing that he would resign at the end of the month, saying that, "due to advanced age," he no longer felt strong enough to lead the church. "His resignation is but another sign of his great care for the Church," Dolan said in a statement on behalf of the bishops. The cardinal touched on the child sex abuse scandals that have rocked the US church during Benedict's seven year reign, recalling his 2008 visit to Washington. "As a pastor feeling pain in a stirring, private meeting at the Vatican nunciature in Washington, he brought a listening heart to victims of sexual abuse by clerics," the cardinal said said. His resignation comes as the US church is fighting mandates under President Barack Obama's health care reform for contraception insurance coverage, as well as against abortion rights and same-sex marriage rights. "Pope Benedict often cited the significance of eternal truths and he warned of a dictatorship of relativism. Some values, such as human life, stand out above all others, he taught again and again. It is a message for eternity," Dolan said. ff/jm/mdl
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