Pope Benedict Steps Down

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History unfolded in Europe Thursday.

ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI)-- As of 1 p.m. St. Louis time, the Catholic Church has no pope.

Pope Benedict the 16th's resignation has been in effect for about four hours, as the former pontiff becomes simply Josef Ratzinger Pope Emeritus.

The last pope to resign was in the year 1415.

So what sort of role does a former pope have in the church? A local theologian says not much of one.

The former pope will live out the rest of his days in a Vatican monastery.