Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Newly Elected Popes Enter the "Room of Tears"

Once the election concludes, the Cardinal Dean summons the Secretary of the College of Cardinals and the Master of Papal Liturgical Celebrations into the hall. The Cardinal Dean then asks the Pope-elect if he assents to the election, saying in Latin: "Acceptasne electionem de te canonice factam in Summum Pontificem? (Do you accept your canonical election as Supreme Pontiff?)." There is no requirement that the Pope-elect do so: he is free to say "non accepto" (I don't accept). In practice, however, any potential Pope-elect who intends not to accept will explicitly state this before he has been given a sufficient number of votes to become Pope. This has happened in modern times with Giovanni Colombo in October 1978[48] and, according to some sources,[who?] with Jorge Bergoglio in 2005. The only significant case where a cardinal did refuse the Papacy after being given a sufficient number of votes was Charles Borromeo in the sixteenth century.

If he accepts, and is already a bishop, he immediately takes office. If he is not a bishop, however, he must be first ordained as one before he can assume office. If a priest is elected, the Cardinal Dean ordains him bishop; if a layman is elected, then the Cardinal Dean first ordains him deacon, then priest, and only then bishop. Only after becoming a bishop does the Pope-elect take office.

(The above functions of the Dean are assumed, if necessary, by the sub-Dean, and if the sub-Dean is also impeded, they are assumed by the senior cardinal-bishop in attendance. Notice that in 2005 the Dean himself—Joseph Ratzinger—was elected Pope.)

Since 533, the new Pope has also decided on the name by which he is to be called at this time. Pope John II was the first to adopt a new papal name; he felt that his original name, Mercurius, was inappropriate, as it was also the name of a Roman god. In most cases, even if such considerations are absent, Popes tend to choose new papal names; the last Pope to reign under his baptismal name was Pope Marcellus II (1555). After the newly-elected Pope accepts his election, the Cardinal Dean again asks him about his papal name, saying in Latin: "Quo nomine vis vocari? (By what name will you be called?)." After the papal name is chosen, the officials are readmitted to the conclave, and the Master of Pontifical Liturgical Ceremonies writes a document recording the acceptance and the new name of the Pope.

Later, the new Pope goes to the "Room of Tears", a small red room next to the Sistine Chapel. The origin of the name is uncertain, but seems to imply the commixture of joy and sorrow felt by the newly chosen holder of the monumental office.[citation needed] The Pope dresses by himself, choosing a set of pontifical choir robes (white cassock, rochet and red mozzetta) among three sizes: small, medium and large. Then, he vests in a gold corded pectoral cross and a red embroidered stole. He wears a white zuchetto on his head.

Next, the senior Cardinal Deacon (the Cardinal Protodeacon) appears at the main balcony of the basilica's fa├žade to proclaim the new pope with the Latin phrase:

Annuntio vobis gaudium magnum:
Habemus Papam!
Eminentissimum ac Reverendissimum Dominum,
Dominum [forename],
Sanctae Romanae Ecclesiae Cardinalem [surname],
qui sibi nomen imposuit [papal name].
("I announce to you a great joy:
We have a Pope!
The Most Eminent and Most Reverend Lord,
Lord [forename],
Cardinal of the Holy Roman Church [surname],
who takes to himself the name [papal name].")

It has happened in the past that the Cardinal Protodeacon has himself been the person elected Pope. In such an event the announcement is made by the next senior Deacon, who has thus succeeded as Protodeacon, and not by the new Pope himself. During the election of Pope Pius X in 1903 Protodeacon Prospero Caterini was physically incapable of completing the announcement, so another made it for him.

The new Pope then gives his first apostolic blessing, Urbi et Orbi ("to the City [Rome] and to the World").

Formerly, the Pope would later be crowned by the triregnum or Triple Tiara at the Papal Coronation. John Paul I, John Paul II, and Benedict XVI did not want an elaborate coronation, choosing instead to a simpler Papal Inauguration ceremony.[49] (Source)

Mary, Mother of Jesus Christ, Eternal High Priest, Mother of all priests and our Mother, help us respond generously to the Holy Spirit's request, through the voice of his Church, to offer up to God Eucharistic adoration for priests. Amen.

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