Papal conclave: By the numbers
American Cardinals head to a special Mass Tuesday at St. Peter's Basilica before they enter the conclave to elect a new pope.
March 12th, 2013
04:38 AM ET

Papal conclave: By the numbers

Rome (CNN) - The conclave in numbers:

115: Number of cardinal electors in the conclave to elect the new pope

67: Number of cardinal electors appointed by Benedict XVI

48: Number of cardinal electors appointed by John Paul II

77: Number of votes to be elected pope (2/3 of 115, rounded up)

48: Number of countries cardinal electors come from

28: Number of cardinal electors from Italy, which has the largest contingent

11: Number of cardinal electors from the United States, the second-largest

35: Number of countries that have one elector each

53: Age of the youngest cardinal elector, Baselios Cleemis Thottunkal of India

80: Age of the oldest cardinal elector, Walter Kasper of Germany (Kasper turned 80 on April 5 but is allowed to be an elector because he was under 80 when the papal throne became vacant)

58: Age of Pope John Paul II at election in 1978

26.5 years: Length of John Paul II's reign

78: Age of Pope Benedict XVI at election in 2005

Nearly 8 years: Length of Benedict XVI's reign

- Journalist Noah Gray contributed to this report.

- Newsdesk editor, The CNN Wire

Filed under: Catholic Church • Pope • Pope Benedict XVI • Pope John Paul II

soundoff (25 Responses)
  1. Matt Hames

    Another number: Colgate University held a mock papal conclave and selected a pope. Spolier alert: http://news.colgate.edu/2013/03/colgate-elects-cardinal-luis-antonio-tagle-of-manila-next-pope.html

    March 12, 2013 at 6:51 pm |
  2. Akira

    Cardinal Kasper turned 80 on MARCH 5th. CNN may want to fix this error, as the way it stands now, that sentence makes no sense.

    March 12, 2013 at 4:45 pm |
  3. Numbers mean nothing...

    Spiritual qualities of the Pope are more important and it is God given.

    March 12, 2013 at 2:43 pm |
  4. clarity

    March 12, 2013 at 10:50 am |
    • clarity

      Roman Catholic Church Sex Abuse Cases


      Not good

      March 12, 2013 at 10:50 am |
  5. Number

    177 – Number of possible GAY men electing a useless figure head.

    March 12, 2013 at 9:36 am |
  6. G. Zeus Kreiszchte

    Uh, so why do.....MEN...... have to...... VOTE..... on who the next Supreme Leader of their religion will be? Can't their alleged "god" do that by writing it reversed on a mirror in red lipstick or burnt into the cardinals' morning toast, etc.? No all-powerful, all-knowing "god" would ask mere men who they think their next leader should be. What a crock! Hey guys, God here. Yeah, I want you to make a big show of locking yourselves in a room to wait for me to tell you who to pick. That way you can further enforce the idea to your peon followers that they NEED some phony elected clergyman to intercede on their behalf....cuz only clergy can actually communicate with "god" since we say so. HA HA HA! I can't believe so many gullible dolts follow this crap.

    March 12, 2013 at 9:32 am |
  7. .

    "Age of the oldest cardinal elector, Walter Kasper of Germany (Kasper turned 80 on April 5 but is allowed to be an elector because he was under 80 when the papal throne became vacant)"

    How could that guy have turned 80 April 5?? What is this, "Back To The Future"??

    March 12, 2013 at 9:10 am |
  8. clarity

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Roman Catholic Church Sex Abuse Cases


    Not good

    March 12, 2013 at 9:07 am |
  9. Reality

    The number of wasted words on this subject: Five Million and counting !!!!

    March 12, 2013 at 8:04 am |
  10. 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 7:54 am |
  11. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things

    March 12, 2013 at 7:15 am |
    • Mirosal

      Sorry, but by your own doctrine AND beliefs, it cannot change a single thing. Your post is moot, and you should be mute.

      March 12, 2013 at 7:18 am |
    • as always

      The post is Truth and will always be Truth.

      March 12, 2013 at 7:25 am |
    • Mirosal

      You are correct, I speak the truth.

      March 12, 2013 at 7:45 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 8:37 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 8:40 am |
    • According to the bible prayer cannot change things

      If god's supreme plan rules in the heavens then prayer is useless. If you pray for something that's not in the plan it won't happen, no matter how hard you pray. And if you pray for something in the plan, it would have happened anyway even without your prayer.

      If god gives us free will then no matter how hard you pray god refuses to do anything, like not doing anything for the 6m Jews because that would interfere with Hitler’s free will

      March 12, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
    • as always

      mirosal you wouldn't know Truth if it jumped up and bit you on the ass.

      March 12, 2013 at 4:13 pm |
  12. End Religion

    This is what passes for news?

    March 12, 2013 at 7:07 am |
    • Mirosal

      Hey, just think if it was Faux "News" doing this article instead!! lol

      March 12, 2013 at 7:17 am |
  13. USMC 1371

    All the sick child abusers in one place if their was a god all that evil would be taken care of in one swoop.

    March 12, 2013 at 5:56 am |
    • I'd say .....

      drop a nuke on them all, but I really don't want to destroy the art work in the Vatican. Religious or not, those pieces of art they have truly are priceless

      March 12, 2013 at 6:36 am |
    • Science

      Or a black hole.........art work with the hor-ny guy(s) they would hide it too .

      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 7:12 am |
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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.