Skip to comments.Breaking: Papal conclave to start on March 12th
Posted on 03/08/2013 9:45:24 AM PST by SeekAndFind
(VATICAN CITY) The cardinals have just announced that the date for the start of the papal conclave will be March 12th, next Tuesday:
“The eighth General Congregation of the College of Cardinals has decided that the Conclave will begin on Tuesday, 12 March 2013.
“A “pro eligendo Romano Pontifice” Mass will be celebrated in St. Peter’s Basilica in the morning. In the afternoon the cardinals will enter into the Conclave.”
At least in the press office, I was literally the first person to be handed the announcement. I happened to wander over to the information table when a messenger handed me the bulletin and said something including, “Prima.” I asked a press office official to help me translate, and she informed me that I had the news first — and that I’d better do something with it, fast.
A Tuesday start to the conclave works almost perfectly in terms of the general concerns over the pastoral and liturgical schedule. While it’s not a necessity for an election to take place by the 17th, it would make the logistics work better for Holy Week preparations. Furthermore, setting the date for four days hence makes it appear that the cardinals anticipate having had plenty of time to discuss their broad concerns — and perhaps have a good idea on a short list of potential successor to Benedict XVI and St. Peter.
I have also been handed a note prepared shortly beforehand that some journalists will be given a tour of the Sistine Chapel tomorrow. That would indicate that their security plans are in place for the conclave, and they want to give the media some context for their later reporting.
Addendum: As a side note, I very nearly didn’t make it to the press office today, thanks to general exhaustion from my travels. I’m feeling much better now.
Vatican: Papal conclave will begin Tuesday
ROME The papal conclave to elect the new leader of the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics will begin on Tuesday afternoon, a Vatican spokesman announced.
Cardinals will enter the closed meeting after holding a special Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica in the morning, Father Federico Lombardi said in a statement Friday.
Apart from eating and sleeping, they will not be allowed to leave the conclave until they have chosen who will succeed Pope Benedict XVI, who announced his abdication on Feb. 10 and formally ended his papacy on Feb. 28, citing his increasing physical frailty.
Cardinals have been holding closed-door meetings this week in Rome to plan a date for the conclave.
I was hoping for Monday. I pray that the new Holy Father will be installed on March 17th.
It would be such a shame if Cardinal O’Malley were stuck in Rome for St. Patrick’s Day. hee hee.
Installation on March 17 could still happen...but March 12, the feast of Gregory the Great is an excellent choice for beginning the Conclave.
The interval between the election and the consecration will probably be ten days or less, so the new pope may be in office before Easter.
The intervals between election and consecration in the past 110 years are as follows:
1903: 5 days
1914: 3 days
1922: 6 days
1939: 10 days
1958: 7 days
1963: 9 days
1978 (first): 8 days
1978 (second): 7 days
2005: 5 days.
The interval in 1914 was so short because World War I had just broken out (although Italy was not yet a belligerent).
They can really increase their membership if they just make Obama their pope. He can be Pope Dickus I.
Of course, the papacy would have to change their positions on birth control and gay marriage but Obama would send their membership roles soaring.