Without a favorite candidate among the cardinals division, this morning started the second conclave of the third millennium, to elect the 266th Pope in the history of the Catholic Church.
At 4:30pm, local time in Rome, one hundred fifteen cardinals from 50 countries will enter the Sistine Chapel to decide who will succeed the late Pope, Benedict XVI, who resigned last February.
The conclave is being held without any strong candidate, but all eyes are on cardinals of dynamic and youth churches, like the African and Latin American. Several claim that the next pope will not be Italian, because of the Vatileaks scandal.
All cardinals take an oath promising to keep the secret of what is said or done in the conclave. The staff (about 90 people, including doctors, sacristans, nurses and a bus driver) also solemnly sworn to secrecy on all they see during the deliberations.
After a meditation, the cardinals will proceed to the first and only vote on the first day of the conclave, which is optional, not required on the first day.
Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman announced that is expected that in the first vote “black smoke” will be the result, as usual. From the second day, the cardinals will vote twice in the morning and twice in the afternoon.