With Monday's announcement that Pope Benedict the XVI will be resigning on February 28th, some local Catholic leaders are talking about the process that will lead to the selection of the pope's successor.
The Bishop of the Altoona Johnstown Catholic Diocese had the chance to meet twice with Pope Benedict. A spokesperson for the diocese says it was the condition of the pope that made this retirement announcement such a surprise for the local Bishop.
Other church leaders say it is imported to keep the current Pope in the prayers of the faithful during this time of transition. There will be a special mass celebrated at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Altoona on Thursday, February 28th at Noon. The entire Catholic Community is invited to attend the service on that day of historic transition.