Help wanted: Pope. Job requirements include…

If you wonder what the cardinals will be looking for when they gather in the Sistine Chapel next month, well, they’ve already narrowed their requirements. Details from CNS:  One task facing the College of Cardinals already has been completed: A job description for the Catholic Church’s chief evangelizer already is written. He must be humble, [Read More...]

The final days: details of Pope Benedict’s schedule released; SSPX matter “entrusted to next Pope”

From VIS:  This morning Fr. Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See Press Office, presented information related to the Holy Father’s calendar and clarified some issues that have been raised in the past few days. At 9:00am on Saturday, 23 February, the Holy Father and the Roman Curia will conclude their spiritual exercises. Traditionally, the [Read More...]

Seminarians respond to Benedict resignation

CNS dropped by the Pontifical North American College in Rome to get some reaction to the resignation.  The result is this excellent video by producer Robert Duncan.  Check it out. [Read more...]

Who is the only living cardinal to have voted in three conclaves? —UPDATED

That would be Washington’s Cardinal William Baum. His secretary for several years was Msgr. Bart Smith. The cardinal was in poor health, so Msgr. Bart accompanied him throughout the conclave (he was the last out of the Sistine Chapel before the votes took place) and he was on the balcony behind the new Pope when [Read More...]

Pope Benedict’s farewell to be broadcast live

Details, from Zenit:  On the last day of his pontificate, Benedict XVI will be filmed live by television cameras during his final hours in the Vatican, according to Monsignor Edoardo María Viganó, director of the Vatican Television Center (VTC), who explained that the Pontiff’s departure to Castel Gandolfo by helicopter “will be a historic moment.” [Read More...]

Report: the man in white will stay that way

A report this morning, quoting his brother, indicates that the Holy Father will continue to wear his signature white cassock after he’s retired.  (If you’re wondering why the pontiff wears white, Rocco had a good explanation a few years back: it is in honor of Pius V, who died in 1572.  Writes Rocco: “As a [Read More...]

VIDEO: The people and places of the conclave

Robert Duncan over at CNS in Rome has put together this lovely meditative video, featuring some of the people and places that we’ll be hearing much about in the weeks to come. Consider this a preview of Coming Attractions, if you will—and, quite possibly, a peek at the next pope. Check it out below. [Read more...]

O’Malley rising?

John Allen this morning has some buzz surrounding the cardinal archbishop of Boston: While the U.S. media has focused on Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York as the most plausible, if still remote, American prospect, another name has generated a surprising degree of buzz in the Italian press: Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston, partly on [Read More...]

Pope Benedict, pensioner

He’ll have a little spending money, it seems.  Details:  Pope Benedict XVI does not, officially, have an income. The head of the Catholic Church doesn’t really get paid, the Vatican has said repeatedly in response to inquiries from the press over the years; he has his every need provided for by the Holy see. But we know what [Read More...]

“‘The church is alive,’ he said, and he set out to keep it that way…”

A comprehensive and interesting roundup of reaction to Benedict’s resignation, from the terrific Ann Rogers in Pittsburgh: Pope Benedict XVI, the German pope who some feared would spend his pontificate scourging liberal Roman Catholics, focused on preaching about God’s love. “His greatest legacy is his spiritual hunger and thirst to bring people closer to God,” [Read More...]