Cardinals gather one last time before conclave to elect new pope
March 11th, 2013
07:48 PM ET

Cardinals gather one last time before conclave to elect new pope

By Michael Pearson. Richard Allen Greene and Dan Rivers, CNN

Rome (CNN) - The Sistine Chapel is ready. The new pope's clothes are laid out. Now it's up to the cardinals.

The work to elect a successor to retired Pope Benedict XVI begins in earnest Tuesday, with a morning Mass at St. Peter's Basilica.

The service - open to the public - will be the last public event featuring the 115 cardinals who will choose the new spiritual leader of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics.

Cardinals taking part in the process will then walk to the Sistine Chapel, chanting prayers as they go, to begin the secret election called the conclave.

After that, the only clue the world will have of what is happening inside will be periodic puffs of smoke from a copper chimney installed over the weekend in the Sistine Chapel.

Black smoke, no pope. White smoke, success.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Catholic Church • Pope • Pope Benedict XVI

soundoff (80 Responses)
  1. There is a second set of 10 commandments, more important than the first

    The second set of commandments god gave to Moses after he broke the first set. This is the final set of commandments, so they should be the authoritative set. They are a bit different from the first set. God obviously had second thoughts and included some improvements. One might expect the improvements to be of earth shattering importance, something like "slavery is bad" or "freedom of speech is good" or "do not kill does not mean unless you have and excuse" Interestingly the improvements include:
    The feast of unleavened bread shalt thou keep in the month when the ear is on the corn.
    Thou shalt observe the feast of weeks, even of the first fruits of the wheat harvest, and the feast of ingathering at the year's end.
    Thou shalt not boil a baby goat in its mother's milk.
    Exodus 23:19, Exodus 34:26, Deuteronomy 14:21

    March 12, 2013 at 10:37 pm |
  2. Sara Howells


    March 12, 2013 at 6:21 pm |

      This video is garbage, don't bother viewing it. This troll is only trying to get hits for their youtube site.

      Click the report abuse link to get rid of this trash.

      March 12, 2013 at 6:25 pm |
  3. Christianity is a form of SEVERE mental illness

    "to begin the secret election called the conclave."
    HUGE credibility issue. Any religion that is secretive is a HUGE red flag. If they had faith in their god "choosing" the pope...it would be a lottery.

    March 12, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
  4. One Last

    One last cluster -uck.

    March 12, 2013 at 9:42 am |
    • clarity

      Roman Catholic Church Sex Abuse Cases


      Not good

      March 12, 2013 at 10:48 am |
  5. clarity

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Roman Catholic Church Sex Abuse Cases


    Not good

    March 12, 2013 at 9:09 am |
  6. Over 40,000 denominations of insanity

    Some believe that celibacy is appropriate for certain people, or for certain positions. It's ridiculous. Celibacy is unnatural and will continue to cause problems for the religious institutions that employ it.

    Many of the people from these same institutions advocate against abortion, but don't understand the realistic benefit of the morning after pill or even basic contraception; their unrealistic wishful thinking is causing the death of many at the hands of disease. Realistically, many abortions could be avoided if a morning-after pill were not viewed as such an evil option. Many of these same people bring children into the world at a high pace, and then would prefer that the rest of society take over and educate their children in their particular brand of religion when they don't plan well.

    In the U.S. recently we learned of the head of LCMS chastising a minister of that church for participating in a joint service for the victims of the Newtown school shooting.

    One sect calls homosexuality an abomination while the next one in the same denomination is already performing gay marriage.

    One sect, the Westboro Baptist Church believes Americans are being killed at war because America is too kind to "fags".

    One sect believes that Jesus and Satan were brothers and that Christ will return to Jerusalem AND Jackson County, Missouri.

    One sect believes women to be subservient, while another sect in the same denomination promotes equality between the sexes.

    Conflicted right from the very beginning, Christianity continues to splinter and create divisions and more extremism as it goes.

    Has anything improved with Christianity since 200+ years ago?

    Thomas Jefferson, POTUS #3 (from Notes on the State of Virginia):

    Millions of innocent men, women, and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined, imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch towards uniformity. What has been the effect of coercion? To make one half the world fools, and the other half hypocrites. To support roguery and error all over the earth.

    James Madison, POTUS #4, chief architect of the U.S. Constitution & the Bill of Rights (from A Memorial and Remonstrance delivered to the Virginia General Assembly in 1785):

    During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What has been its fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the clergy; ignorance and servility in the laity; in both, superstition, bigotry, and persecution.

    John Adams, POTUS #2 (in a letter to Thomas Jefferson, 09/03/1816):

    I almost shudder at the thought of alluding to the most fatal example of the abuses of grief which the history of mankind has preserved – the Cross. Consider what calamities that engine of grief has produced! With the rational respect that is due to it, knavish priests have added prostitutions of it, that fill or might fill the blackest and bloodiest pages of human history.

    Ben Franklin (from a letter to The London Packet, 3 June 1772):

    If we look back into history for the character of present sects in Christianity, we shall find few that have not in their turns been persecutors, and complainers of persecution. The primitive Christians thought persecution extremely wrong in the Pagans, but practised it on one another. The first Protestants of the Church of England, blamed persecution in the Roman church, but practised it against the Puritans: these found it wrong in the Bishops, but fell into the same practice themselves both here and in New England.

    Thomas Paine (from The Age of Reason):

    All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit.

    March 12, 2013 at 7:55 am |
  7. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things.

    March 12, 2013 at 7:17 am |
    • Jesus

      Prayer does not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!

      March 12, 2013 at 8:38 am |
    • Really?

      "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things"

      That's why the data, has shown that atheists have happier and healthier lives than conservative Christians. Your post is built on a lie!

      March 12, 2013 at 8:41 am |
  8. Science


    Hey all Creationsts

    Gravity wins no god(s} required or splat goes the fairy.

    Curtains Down for the Black Hole Firewall Paradox: Making Gravity Safe for Einstein Again


    March 12, 2013 at 6:32 am |
  9. peircebertuzzi

    til I saw the receipt that said $7007, I didnt believe ...that...my friends brother woz like actually bringing in money parttime at there computar.. there neighbor has been doing this for only twenty three months and resantly paid for the loans on their apartment and got themselves a Mazda MX-5. read more at............. BIT40. ℂOℳ

    March 12, 2013 at 3:53 am |
  10. Austin

    Petrus Romanus?

    Malachy prophesy.

    March 12, 2013 at 1:53 am |
    • midwest rail

      The "prophecies" of Malachy are muddled nonsense. Next.

      March 12, 2013 at 3:06 am |
    • .

      Austin, you didn't even KNOW about that bs prophecy before it was told you on the BB...don't you think that the RCC knows about it and WON'T name the next pope Peter of Rome?? Get real.

      March 12, 2013 at 9:31 am |
  11. lol??

    Aville Bigot is goin' nutso.

    March 12, 2013 at 12:54 am |
    • .

      Vegas syphilic is spreading her love. And disease.

      March 12, 2013 at 12:58 am |
  12. AB

    In conclusion, all religions dummy dum dum.
    Pickles good.

    March 12, 2013 at 12:49 am |
    • AB

      I take that back.

      Lakers good. I don't want a pickle.

      March 12, 2013 at 12:52 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.