Cardinals from around the world gathered Monday inside the Vatican for their first round of meetings before the conclave to elect the next pope, amid scandals inside and out of the Vatican and the continued reverberations of Benedict XVI’s decision to retire.
Cardinals were treated like rock stars as they entered the Vatican on Monday morning, with television crews swarming around the red-capped churchmen and their handlers pushing their way through the crowds.
“A Latin American Pope is possible, everything is possible!” said Portuguese Cardinal Jose Saraiva Martins as he entered. (more…)
Pope Benedict XVI is set to retire in just three short days on February 28. That’s going to leave one big gaping hole in the Catholic church, which its cardinals are tasked with filling. So, if you’re thinking about becoming the next pope, there are some hoops you’ll need to jump through first.
For starters, the future pope has to be a man and he has to be Catholic. If you have that down, then you should know you have to be “super holy” and “wicked smart,” as blogger/Reverend James Martin puts it. (more…)
Pope Benedict XVI will be known as “emeritus pope” in his retirement and will continue to wear a white cassock, the Vatican announced Tuesday, again fueling concerns about potential conflicts arising from having both a reigning and a retired pope.
The pope’s title and what he would wear have been a major source of speculation ever since Benedict stunned the world and announced he would resign on Thursday, the first pontiff to do so in 600 years.
The Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, said Benedict himself had made the decision in consultation with others, settling on “Your Holiness Benedict XVI” and either emeritus pope or emeritus Roman pontiff. (more…)
His arms outstretched in a symbolic embrace, Pope Benedict XVI blessed tens of thousands of cheering people on Sunday in one of his last appearances as pontiff from his window overlooking St. Peter’s Square.
Last week, 85-year-old Benedict shocked the world by announcing his resignation. He will step down on Feb. 28, planning to retreat to a life of prayer in a monastery behind the Vatican’s ancient walls. (more…)