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Pope Francis

These are the names of the 17 new cardinals the pope appointed at the consistory

November 19, 2016. 13 of them are under the age of 80, and thus able to vote in a hypothetical conclave, and four of them are non-electors.
Vatican

Vatican congratulates Trump and hopes his time in office "can truly be fruitful"

November 9, 2016. While speaking to Vatican Radio, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State, congratulated the new president and hoped that his government "can truly be fruitful."
Vatican

Vatican strongly reacts to episcopal ordinations in China made without pope's permission

November 7, 2016. "In recent weeks, there has been a series of reports regarding some episcopal ordinations conferred without Papal Mandate of priests of the unofficial community of the Catholic Church in Continental China,” explains the Vatican in a letter signed by the Director of the Holy See Press Office, Greg Burke.

A look at the History of the Conclave

2013-03-11

AMBROGIO PIAZZONI
Vatican's Apostolic Library, Director
"At first, the election of a Pope, was much like the way bishops were elected in the first century. It was the Christian community, so really the Christian assembly of Rome who would chose Rome's bishop, who in essence, then became the Pope.”

But with time, the Church began to grow, so to prevent any outside influences from filtering in the election process, a Pope called for change and marked a new direction for the Church.

AMBROGIO PIAZZONI
Vatican's Apostolic Library, Director
"It was Pope Leo IX, who in the year 1049, concretely decided that it would be only Cardinals who would elect a Pope.”

Even though the Conclave has take place in the Sistine Chapel for years now, it was never the official site, until John Paul II added a clause to the apostolic constitution.

It's an election process where religion, tradition, mystery, suspense and quite often, surprise come together.

AMBROGIO PIAZZONI
Vatican's Apostolic Library, Director
"Usually the elected Pope is different from what people expect or imagine. I would say that maybe 12 or 15 times, the person who was believed to be elected as Pope, actually was. That's not a high number, considering there have been roughly 300 Papal elections.”

It's all held behind closed doors, hence the name 'conclave,' meaning with key. Each cardinal has an assigned seat...and so, the voting process begins, marking another chapter in the history of the Church.


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