Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina elected pope

Jason Horowitz and Anthony Faiola
Washington Post
March 13, 2013

VATICAN CITY — White smoke rose over the Sistine Chapel on Wednesday, heralding the election of a new pope after the 115 voting cardinals of the Roman Catholic Church reached a conclusion on the 266th pontiff on the second day of deliberations.

Crowds erupted in joy in St. Peter’s Square and waited anxiously for the presentation of the still undisclosed new pope, who was expected to greet the world on the balcony of the St. Peter’s Basilica for the first time around 8 p.m. Rome time (3 p.m. Eastern time).

A throng of people ran up the Via della Conciliazione, the broad avenue leading to St. Peter’s Square, holding umbrellas above their heads. A line of Polish nuns in white clasped each other’s hands. Clusters of students jumped up and down, and roars of joy passed over the sea of people like waves.

“Huge emotions,” said Claudio Santini, a lawyer from Rome who stood in a bowler hat in the square. “It’s not important where the pope is from, just that he can travel into people’s hearts.”

A marching band and lines of Swiss Guards flying the white and yellow Vatican colors proceeded up the basilica steps in front of the cheering crowds.

Standing at attention in front of the basilica, the band played the Italian national anthem as many in the crowd sang along — a sign of the close relationship between the Vatican and Italy.

The papal seal on the Vatican Web site, which has been cloaked under an umbrella during the interregnum following Benedict’s retirement, or sede vacante, now again displays the papal tiara under the title “Habemus Papam.”

The white smoke, accompanied by the pealing of bells to eliminate any confusion, billowed from a flue on the roof of the Sistine Chapel, prompting the huge gathered in the square to erupt in applause and cheers.

The election came after two rounds of balloting in a morning session. The 115 voting cardinals reconvened about 4:30 p.m. (11:30 a.m. Eastern) to vote up to two more times before either electing a new pope or adjourning for the day.

update here

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