The Vatican announced this morning that Pope Benedict XVI will resign later this month due his advanced age.
Elected in 2005 after the death of Pope John Paul II at age 84, Benedict said from the onset of his papacy that he anticipated a short reign as the 265th leader of the Catholic Church.
Now at age 85 and with a series of health issues, including mild strokes, over the years, the German religious leader will end his nearly eight-year papacy on February 28.
Here is how celebrities are reacting to today's major global news.
Ricky Martin @ricky_martin The #Pope resigns? I didn't know that was even possible. Apparently, the last time a pope resigned was the year 1415#IfYouRintrested
Piers Morgan @piersmorgan Popes can resign????
Piers Morgan @piersmorgan As a Catholic, I'm not buying this. Popes don't just quit because they're tired. What's going on here??
Star Jones @StarJonesEsq The definition of "humility": Pope Benedict: "I have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to me."
Debi Mazar @debimazar Surprised thr was no twttr announcement from the #POPE who recently joined.He really had nothing 2 say.They r supposed 2 die in service..hmm
Kirstie Alley @kirstiealley So The Pope just announced he's stepping down...which I didn't know was an option... did you ?