Choosing a new pope: Full coverage of the election of Pope Francis
3:39 AM EDT, March 19, 2013
VATICAN CITY – Huge crowds gathered in St. Peter’s Square and spilled into side streets Tuesday morning as Pope Francis prepared for his official inauguration as leader of the Roman Catholic Church and its 1.2 billion followers.
6:29 AM EDT, March 19, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- Before crowned heads, government leaders and masses of the faithful, Pope Francis formally took office Tuesday as head of the Roman Catholic Church in a ceremony replete with pageantry and symbols from ancient Christendom.
2:54 PM EDT, March 18, 2013
ROME – Pope Francis, the first pontiff from the New World, has decided to remember his roots by choosing a personal coat of arms that recalls his career as a cleric in Argentina, the Vatican said Monday.
7:43 AM EDT, March 17, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- Tens of thousands of pilgrims Sunday greeted Pope Francis on his first scheduled appearance before the general public, shouting their acclaim in St. Peter’s Square as the pope gave the first Angelus blessing of his pontificate.
1:28 PM EDT, March 18, 2013
ROME – He called her policies an “attack on God’s plan.” She described him as “medieval.”
11:59 AM EDT, March 17, 2013
ROME – Snarled traffic, cheering crowds, well-wishers from around the world. Pope Francis’ first scheduled public appearance? That, and the Rome Marathon too.
March 17, 2013
11:34 AM EDT, March 16, 2013
VATICAN CITY – The pope may be considered by his followers to be head of the universal Catholic Church, but that doesn’t stop national feelings from bubbling to the surface when a new pontiff is named.
5:03 PM EDT, March 15, 2013
After the man once known as Jorge Mario Bergoglio was chosen to become Pope Francis, old friends and neighbors in Buenos Aires emerged with stories of the pope in his youth.
4:06 PM EDT, March 15, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- Like a man who has somehow won the lottery against his will, newly appointed Pope Francis has already begun refusing some of the privileges of office, in keeping with the austere, almost ascetic ways he has pursued as a Jesuit priest.
2:45 PM EDT, March 15, 2013
Pope Francis won praise from Jewish leaders after his election this week to lead the Roman Catholic Church, a promising sign for future relations between two faiths with a troubled history.
11:12 AM EDT, March 15, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- The Vatican on Friday denied that Pope Francis acquiesced to Argentina's brutal military regime in the 1970s and '80s, saying the accusations are part of a "defamatory” campaign.
10:18 AM EDT, March 15, 2013
BUENOS AIRES — For the last two days here “it’s been all pope, everything pope. In the streets, in the cafes, on the corners, everyone’s talking about the pope,” said Fernando Vignoles, a thirtysomething cab driver and longtime resident of Argentina’s capital.
8:16 AM EDT, March 15, 2013
ROME -- Pope Francis urged cardinals of the Roman Catholic Church never to give in to pessimism, telling them Friday that they had crucial wisdom to pass on to the young, which he compared to “good wine” that gets better with time.
8:00 AM EDT, March 14, 2013
The Argentine cardinal Jorge Bergoglio was chosen Wednesday as the new pontiff to lead 1.2 billion Catholics around the world, taking the name Pope Francis. His election puts a halt to the fevered speculation and outright betting surrounding who would become the next pope.
5:25 PM EDT, March 14, 2013
VATICAN CITY — In their private meetings before electing the new pope, Roman Catholic cardinals took note when one of their members rose to speak — clearly, quietly and persuasively — about the need to purify the church and streamline its unwieldy bureaucracy.
4:46 PM EDT, March 14, 2013
As a Jesuit, Pope Francis comes from a religious order that traditionally shuns such high office – one key reason the Argentine is the first Jesuit to lead the vast Roman Catholic Church, scholars say.
11:26 AM EDT, March 14, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- The Jesuits gave a warm welcome Thursday to the election of Pope Francis, the first pope from their order, and suggested that he will be committed to evangelizing and to reforming the Roman Catholic Church.
8:39 PM EDT, March 14, 2013
BUENOS AIRES -- The award for cleverest new-pope headline probably goes to Britain’s Daily Mirror tabloid, which featured a front-page photograph Thursday of Pope Francis raising his right hand from the Vatican balcony. The headline: “The New Hand of God.”
3:33 PM EDT, March 14, 2013
"When we walk without the cross, when we build without the cross and when we proclaim Christ without the cross, we are not disciples of the Lord," he says. "We are worldly."
7:46 PM EDT, March 13, 2013
Two days is fast. But in AD 236, the leader of the Roman Catholic Church was selected by a dove.
5:42 PM EDT, March 13, 2013
What's in a pope's name?
6:28 PM EDT, March 13, 2013
Jorge Mario Bergoglio, the first non-European pope in more than a millennium and the first from South America, was a surprise choice to lead the world’s 1.2 billion Roman Catholics. Few Vatican watchers had the Argentine cleric near the top of their lists of potential successors to Benedict XVI.
4:04 PM EDT, March 13, 2013
Minutes after Jorge Mario Bergoglio gave his first address as Pope Francis I, the Vatican sent a Tweet from the papal Twitter account: "HABEMUS PAPAM FRANCISCUM."
4:06 PM EDT, March 13, 2013
Roman Catholic cardinals chose Jorge Mario Bergoglio as pope Wednesday, selecting the Argentine Jesuit to succeed Pope Benedict XVI, who resigned Feb. 28, and lead 1.2 billion church followers around the globe. He was chosen after five rounds of voting in the Sistine Chapel.
4:35 PM EDT, March 13, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- Jorge Mario Bergoglio was named the 266th pope Wednesday, succeeding Benedict XVI as leader of the world’s 1.2 billion Roman Catholics and inheriting a global church that is growing in some parts of the world but faces serious challenges at home and abroad.
2:26 PM EDT, March 13, 2013
The name chosen by the next pope will be his first decision -- and the first clue to how he will lead the Roman Catholic Church.
2:21 PM EDT, March 13, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- White smoke rose from the Sistine Chapel on Wednesday, proclaiming the selection of a new pope by Roman Catholic cardinals on their second day of voting.
11:32 AM EDT, March 13, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- As Rome and the world await the next puffs of smoke from the Sistine Chapel, the Vatican on Wednesday sought to downplay reports of divisions among the 115 Roman Catholic cardinals gathered to elect a new pope.
7:31 AM EDT, March 13, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- An Italian television station is broadcasting the salacious show "The Borgias" during the papal election conclave, despite pressure from a Catholic group to drop it because of its unflattering depiction of the papacy and the effect it might have on non-Catholics who might confuse past and present.
3:35 PM EDT, March 12, 2013
8:04 AM EST, March 9, 2013
VATICAN CITY – The chimney is up, the tourists are out and the cardinals are on deck.
11:59 AM EDT, March 11, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- As possible front-runners emerged ahead of a conclave to elect the next pope, Roman Catholic cardinals Monday wrapped up a week of discussion on issues facing the church, with some pushing unsuccessfully to extend their talks before the start of balloting.
11:53 AM EST, March 8, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- Nearly a month after Pope Benedict XVI announced his surprise decision to retire, Roman Catholic cardinals on Friday said they will begin voting to choose his replacement on Tuesday.
12:04 PM EST, March 8, 2013
ROME -- Days away from entering the Sistine Chapel to help pick a new pope, Cardinal Roger Mahony on Friday called on Christians to embrace forgiveness and lamented the enmity and isolation that he said were at the root of such problems as gangs, hate crimes and war.
12:28 PM EST, March 7, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- A day after the U.S. delegation shut down its popular daily media briefing, the Vatican continued to struggle Thursday to stem the tide of leaks to Italian media, allegedly by cardinals gathered for private meetings ahead of their eagerly anticipated conclave to elect a new pope.
11:38 AM EST, March 6, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- A bid by American cardinals to bring a touch of transparency to the process of choosing the next pope was halted Wednesday following complaints from fellow prelates attending meetings ahead of their election conclave.
12:47 PM EST, February 25, 2013
ROME -- Pope Benedict XVI paved the way Monday for cardinals of the Roman Catholic Church to gather earlier than usual to elect his successor if they choose to do so after he steps down later this week.
2:16 PM EST, February 24, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- In his last Sunday address in St. Peter’s Square before leaving his post, Pope Benedict XVI said he was following God’s wishes by stepping down and would not abandon the Roman Catholic Church.
5:00 AM EST, February 22, 2013
It remains to be decided when the Catholic world’s cardinals will lock themselves away in the Sistine Chapel to elect the next pope. But the undeclared candidates to succeed retiring Pope Benedict XVI are already campaigning in the gilded salons of Vatican apartments and over grappa and espresso in restaurant alcoves.
5:04 PM EST, February 20, 2013
ROME -- A senior Vatican official called Cardinal Roger Mahony's participation in the selection of the next pope "troubling," but said there was no formal procedure to stop the retired Los Angeles archbishop from attending the conclave next month.
1:23 PM EST, February 19, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- Spectacular views of Rome, stands of palm and magnolia trees, the Sistine Chapel close by -- these are the amenities awaiting the first pope to step down in more than 600 years after he moves into his retirement home this spring.
1:18 PM EST, February 17, 2013
VATICAN CITY -- A week after Pope Benedict announced his resignation, more than 50,000 supporters jammed into St. Peter’s Square on Sunday for his next-to-last weekly blessing, as it emerged the aging pontiff may have gone blind in one eye.