Cardinals continue to discuss state of the Church in the world as conclave approaches

.- Earlier today, 138 cardinals gathered at the Vatican to prepare to select a new pope, met for their eleventh General Congregation of Cardinals. Joaquin Navarro-Valls, the Holy See’s press office director, said in a statement this morning that, "After reciting the prayer to the Holy Spirit, the cardinals dedicated the entire morning to an exchange of ideas on the problems of the Church and of the world.”

"Also today,” he added, “several cardinals who headed congregations and pontifical councils of the Roman Curia laid out the most important problems faced by their dicasteries.”

Activities for the conclave will begin at 10 a.m. on Monday with a Mass for the election of the Roman Pontiff, which will be celebrated by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger. 115 Cardinals will then take their places in the Sistine Chapel to set to work electing a new shepherd for the Church.

As in the past General Congregations, the cardinals concluded today with the Regina Coeli prayer.

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