A New Pope
So, I admit that despite the fact that I am not the best practicing catholic out there, that I have been completely intrigued by the whole election of a new Pope. I was too young to remember when Pope John Paul II was elected pope so I have been paying attention to the whole process with significant interest. I always knew about the whole "white smoke" thing. Everybody knows that. It was the rest of everything that happens that I didn’t know anything about. I didn’t know about the breaking of the seal/ring, the election process, the secrecy. Heck, didn’t even know the history. Did you know that the process of the conclave was the result of the delay in the election of Gregory X. That was an election that took more than 2 years. Local authorities were so disturbed with the delay that they decided to lock up the cardinals up until they came to a decision (see http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/04192a.htm). Since then, they have refined the process and pur together the appropriate ceremony that only the catholic church can.
It isn’t enough though (as we see from the reports yesterday) to simply count on the white smoke. They added the tolling of the vatican bells. I can tell you that today, I was somewhat awestruck when I came out of my training and saw (and heard) the live footage of the vatican bells ringing in the square. I truly was awestruck. I didn’t believe that I would or could be. It was the solemness of the occasion I suppose. I don’t know. I found myself transfixed to the coverage. Who was elected, what would he call himself. This can be a once in a lifetime even, but if it isn’t, I actually think that I would onsider going to the vatican the next time. Seems that history indicates that the cardinals can make their decisions in a fairly short amount of time. That means that if you know that there is going to be a conclave, it is possble for you to plan a trip to Italy and within a couple of days, you could be in St Peter’s Square when they announce the new Pope. I’m beginning to think that attending an event like that might be something that I would like to do in my lifetime (should the opportunity present itself again).
So I guess the last thing that I wanted to understand is how they choose their names and what is with the "rock start" entrance http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/7523254/?GT1=6428
I ‘m more interested in how they choose their names though. What made him select Benedict XVI. There is always speculation. What I would like to see is a little more information.
Anyway, quite an event for the day for catholics and non-catholics alike. Everyone has been transfixed to the television. Now, we see how the world will be effected.