Pope to change rules, allow early conclave? [CWN]

Pope Benedict XVI will change the rules governing a papal conclave to allow an earlier election of his successor, according to Andrea Tornielli of La Stampa. The Vatican has confirmed that …

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[quote=from article]Pope Benedict has already made one change in the rules, Tornielli notes. Universi Dominci Gregis, promulgated by Pope John Paul II, allowed for the possibility that a new Pope could be elected by a bare majority of the cardinal-electors under some circumstances. Pope Benedict eliminated that possibility, restoring the requirement for a two-thirds majority.
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I was not aware that Pope Benedict changed the rule back regarding 2/3 going to a simple majority at a certain point. I’m glad it was changed back because it removed the potential of a group of Cardinals ‘waiting the conclave out’ so as to get to the simple majority point in the election cycle.

I think that, given the present circumstances, this is a prudent decision on the part of the Holy Father. I pray for him everday and am praying for the upcoming Conclave-not that I’m worried about the Conclave, as I know the Holy Spirit will be present as He always is, but that it is a sublime privilege to be witnessing this historic moment and to participate in it through prayer.

Correct, they’re talking about a Motu Proprio…but it may not have the intended effect, since its the college of cardinals that actually calls together the conclave. The Pope can give them the freedom to call it sooner, but unless he changes more than we expect, they could still delay the opening.

…and a number of non-curial cardinals are apparently opposed to starting too soon, for fear it would give too much advantage to those based in Rome.

One thing I’ve heard is that it could start the 10th, with formal installation (in whatever form) to take place the 17th. But that seems awfully risky to me. I still think they need to wait until after Easter for the formal ceremony.

You know, I personally would welcome an earlier conclave, which would ensure a smoother transition. And it would certainly reduce a lot of anxiety and anticipation on my part.

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