ABILENE, TX - It's a unique start to the lenten season for the Catholic Church as Pope Benedict announced on Monday he's resigning from the Papacy. It's been 600 years since a Pope resigned.
With such a huge change in their church structure a lot of questions surround the issue with no immediate answers.
For some this Ash Wednesday will hold a different significance.
"Maybe it's a little more special," said Holy Family Catholic Church member Barbara Moore. "A lot more prayers are going up for the new Pope that will come and for him as he's dealing with his health issues."
Pope Benedict XVI gave his last Ash Wednesday sermon Wednesday morning.
Faithful Catholics attended their traditional mass service to receive their ashes and begin a season of self denial. One church goer is struggling to accept the Pope's resignation.
"As you know lightening struck the top of Saint Peters when it happened," said Holy Family Catholic Church member Elysa Rodriguez. "My abuelita claims its a sign that God doesn't want to believe in and I pretty much agree."
Questions remain about things like how the current Pope will be addressed or what his attire will be once he steps down.
"They're trying to wrestle with these things in Rome now," said Father Fred Nawakas, Holy Family Catholic Church Pastor. "I know that the ring that he wears, the fisherman's ring will be destroyed when he is no longer Pope."
"As we get close to Easter it'll be a different church in many ways with a new leadership," said Father Nawarkas. "The same teachings that Christ gave, but with a new leader."
Pope Benedict XVI will step aside on February 28.
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