Friday, April 01, 2005
How is Pope Elected?
When the Pope dies the Cardinal Camerlengo must verify his death by calling his name 3 times. If the Pope is dead, the Cardinal Camerlengo becomes temporary boss. A period of 9 days of mourning occurs and then a funeral. 120 Cardinals, all under the age of 80, meet in the Sistine Chapel and cast two votes each morning and one vote each afternoon. Older Cardinals are not allowed to participate and Cardinals in the Conclave must have no contact with the outside world until a new Pope is elected. During the period of voting the Cardinals stay at a hotel like facility in the Vatican City called the Domus Sanctae Marthae. A silent ballot is used. A candidate requires 2/3 majority to be elected. However, if after 30 ballots a candidate does not get 2/3's of the votes, the requirement becomes half +1 of the votes. Technically any Catholic male of age is eligible to become Pope. However, the last time a non-clergyman was elected was in 1379, Pope Urban VI. I am not running for Pope.