Vatican officials thought Pope Francis would only celebrate Holy Thursday Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica, but an invitation from a government minister changed their plans.
“The election of Pope Francis marked a change in the newspapers headlines regarding the Church,” according to Archbishop Lorenzo Baldisseri, the secretary of the conclave that elected the new pontiff.
All the Vatican officials will continue in their positions “until otherwise provided” while Pope Francis takes time for “reflection, prayer and dialogue before making any definitive appointments,” and one can expect changes to happen.
Last night black smoke poured out of the Sistine Chapel smoke stack, leaving no doubt that a single cardinal was unable to reach the two-thirds of the vote needed to be elected the next Pope.
“It’s not journalists that vote in the conclave. It’s cardinals,” Mexican Cardinal Norberto Rivera Carrera said on Sunday, after celebrating Mass at his titular church of San Francesco di Ripa Grande.
The media silence of the cardinals resulted in an anonymous interview to the Italian newspaper La Repubblica in which a source claimed there is “a lobby” of leakers.
“We are not ready to enter the conclave,” Cardinal Francis George of Chicago plainly told the Italian newspaper La Stampa today, adding, “I never felt that we would begin the conclave on March 11th.”
While the cardinals created by Benedict XVI arrive in Rome and get acquainted with the pre-conclave operations, cardinals from the old establishment are pushing for a quick conclave.