Pope considers speeding up succession processThe New York Times | February 21,2013VATICAN CITY — A week ahead of his expected resignation, Pope Benedict XVI is considering changing the rules for the election of his successor, potentially making the process start sooner, the Vatican said Wednesday.
Benedict “is taking into consideration” passing a law to change the rules, said the Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi. He added that he did not know whether the change would affect the timing of a conclave, at which 117 cardinals will elect the next pope.
Church law states that cardinals should wait 15 days after the papacy becomes vacant before starting a conclave so that the cardinals eligible to vote have enough time to travel to Rome. That timing also took into account a papal funeral.
But because Benedict announced Feb. 11 that he would step down Feb. 28, many cardinals have already begun traveling to Rome, where they will attend Benedict’s last public audience as pope next Wednesday and his final farewell to cardinals Feb. 28.
The Vatican has said Benedict will not participate in the conclave to elect his successor. He has said he plans to spend some time at Castel Gandolfo, his summer residence, before eventually moving into a convent in Vatican City.
Ambrogio Piazzoni, the vice prefect of the Vatican library and an expert in the history of conclaves, said Wednesday that the law stated simply that “cardinals present in Rome must wait 15 days for the arrival of the others.”
“That can mean that if the cardinals all arrive before the 15 days there is no need to wait,” he added. “The phrase `must wait’ doesn’t say that you can’t start sooner than 15 days.”
Many cardinals have been hoping to return to their home dioceses in time for Holy Week, which begins this year March 24, Palm Sunday, followed by Easter Sunday on March 31.MORE IN Wire NewsTEHRAN, Iran — An Iranian security court on Tuesday began the closed-door espionage trial of an... Full StorySANAA, Yemen — Fighters backing Yemen’s exiled government captured a key city on the road to the... Full StoryBAGHDAD — Iraq vowed Tuesday to retake Anbar province — now mostly held by the Islamic State — by... Full Story
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day 1739, 'Richard Palmer' identified in prison at York Castle as the notorious outlaw DICK TURPIN; IN 1836, Battle of the Alamo begins near San Antonio de Bexar, Texas; 1896, the Tootsie Roll invented by LEO HIRSCHFELD.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1472, Orkney, Shetland islands put up as collateral by Norway to Scotland in lieu of dowry for MARGARET OF DENMARK on her marriage with JAMES III, king of Scotland; 1962, JOHN GLENN first American to orbit Earth.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: City mayoral candidates debate campaign issues; Hartford, Conn., woman still missing; Neal Goswami reports attempts to legislate suicide; local woman loses 100 pounds through TOPS program.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1878, JOHN TUNSTALL murdered near Lincoln, New Mexico, by the outlaw JESSE EVANS; in 1930, ELM FARM OLLIE first cow to fly in aircraft, first to be milked airborne; 1955, nuke test WASP; '79, snow in Sahara.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Rutland Herald News Editor Alan J. Keays and staff writer Gordon Dritschilo discuss stories planned for the February 18, 2015, edition of the newspaper: Winter budgets maxed, legal marijuana, Springfield bank job, USPS slowdown
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1249 AD, ANDRE of LONGJUMEAU is dispatched by LOUIS IX of France to meet the KHAGAN, ruler of the Mongol Empire; in 1804, during 1st Barbary War, STEPHEN DECATUR scuttles the pirate-held USS Philadelphia in Tripoli.