|Pope Benedict gestures as he|
leaves his general audience
at the Vatican on Feb. 13.
Typically, the conclave takes place 15-20 days after the conclusion of the previous papacy. This allows for the traditional nine days of mourning in the normal case of the death of the pope as well as other preparations. But since the pope has resigned and given 17 days' notice, the conclave could quite feasibly happen sooner.
From Fr. Lombardi:
I don't know if he will deem it necessary or appropriate to elucidate the question of the opening date of the conclave. We will have to see if and when a document is published. It seems to me, for example, the clarification of some details in order to be in complete agreement with another document regarding the conclave, that is, the Ordo Rituum Conclavis. In any case, the question depends on the pope's judgment, and if this document comes about it will be made known through the proper channels.Read entire post from the Vatican Information Service.
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