|Saint Peter's - 1st day of the Cardinals' Meetings
The Cardinals started their preliminary meetings today. First they took an oath to keep everything they discuss secret. They did announce that they sent a message to Pope Emeritus Benedict in hope that he will send them a written message of his own. I assume they thanked him for his years of service, and they probably also asked him for any advice he could give them.
The Cardinals also announced that they discussed the procedures of the following days, as well as the new evangelization.
The Cardinal (Manuel Monteiro de Castro, from Portugal) who gave us a talk at our course on reconciliation this afternoon kept his lips sealed – he gave his talk and then exited stage left.
12 of the electing cardinals are still absent from Rome, but they should be arriving between today and tomorrow.
Saint Peter’s Square was oddly silent when I passed by. It’s a rare sight to see the papal apartment all dark and shuttered up. It’s the building in the top right of the picture.(the pope’s windows are the last two on the right, top floor) My last five years here the lights invariably went on at 6am and turned off at about 10pm.
The Vatican put together a digital tribute in photos to Benedict. It’s at http://www.vatican.va/phome_en.htm and makes you really grateful for our years with our simple and humble “German Shepherd”.
Let’s keep praying for the cardinals.
God bless you all,