Holy Father may free conclave to begin early

Vatican spokesman Fr Federico Lombardi gives strongest indication to date that process to choose the next Pope may not have to observe the standard 15 to 20 day waiting period designed to follow the death of a Pontiff.

Full report here: sconews.co.uk/news/25663/holy-father-may-free-conclave-to-begin-early/

I think they should make up their minds pretty quick as the date of resignation for our Pope is getting closer.

Good. Also good that they’re going to have the Pope issue a direct clarification. Anything else, I’m afraid, would lead to claims of illegitimacy among those not happy with the final selection.

I really don’t see any reason for the Conclave to begin later than the fourth. Either begin it Sunday after Mass, or Monday after Mass. It could take up to a week. I find it unlikely the new Pope will be formally installed before Easter either way…but if they start too late, we could be into Palm Sunday either without a Pope, or one only in office for a day or two.

Better to not risk it. Benedict is out on the 28th. Begin the Conclave the third or fourth. Crown the New Pope the Sunday after Easter (actually, when is the “do you love me / feed my sheep” reading? That would be a particularly appropriate time to formally install the Pope).

I really hope they allow the conclave to gather sooner. With knowledge of when he is resigning, the cardinals have time to plan their trip. I can’t help but feel it would be best to have a pope in place for Holy week!

It is utterly foolish and a waste of time if the Holy Father does not do this, so I have no doubt that he will. In fact, now that the prospect has been contemplated, it should be standard operating procedure in the case of an abdicating Pope that the conclave begins 15 to 20 days after the announcement of the abdication, or not later than 3 days after the effective date, whichever is later. The Cardinals had 17 days to get to Rome and have to be there to meet with the Holy Father on 2/28 anyway.

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