Pope Benedict XVI promised “unconditional” obedience to his successor during a farewell meeting with cardinals in the Vatican on Thursday.
Around 5 p.m., Benedict will leave the palace for the last time as pontiff and fly to the papal retreat at Castel Gandolfo.
Bye bye Benedict. Hello interregnum, also known as “sede vacante” — the period when the papacy is vacant.
Be sure to cast your vote for Benedict’s successor in our famous Sweet Sistine brackets. Voting for the first round closes at midnight Friday.
Catholic News Service reports that the group of cardinals preparing to elect a new pope is slightly older — by four months — than the group that elected Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger in 2005. The average age of the 117 eligible cardinal-electors was 71 years, 11 months.
Blogger Andrew Sullivan thinks Benedict is gay. His proof? Benedict’s trusted secretary, the handsome Monsignor Georg Gänswein, also known as “Gorgeous Georg” by the Italian media, will continue to live with the retiring pontiff, while working for the new pope during the day.
Those iconic red shoes that Benedict is giving up? They’re not Prada. Turns out, they are a product of Peruvian artisan Antonio Arellano.
Forget about the Oscars. There’s rising anti-Semitism in Europe. Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J., convened a hearing on it as part of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.
A bronze statue of civil rights heroine Rosa Parks was unveiled at the U.S. Capitol Wednesday (Feb. 27), a day for members of her African Methodist Episcopal Church to celebrate one of their own. There’s a new stamp bearing her likeness, too.
Arkansas’ Democratic Gov. Mike Beebe vetoed a ban on most abortions at 20 weeks into a pregnancy, setting up an override fight with a Republican-controlled legislature that has been pushing for more restrictions on the procedure.
An Indiana church, one of America’s largest megachurches, is facing multiple foreclosure cases.
A measure aimed at preventing groups like Westboro Baptist Church from protesting at funerals advanced in the North Carolina state legislature Wednesday and is headed for Gov. Pat McCrory’s desk to be signed into law.
A 10-hour docudrama, “The Bible,” which will air on the History Channel on Sunday nights, starting March 3 through Easter, features Hollywood heavyweights Mark and Roma Burnett.
A judge sentenced a member of gospel music’s Winans family to nearly 14 years in prison Wednesday for an $8 million financial scam that was promoted in church pulpits.
Danish Muslims have rallied to defend the free speech of someone they hate: Lars Hedegaard, an anti-Islam polemicist and former newspaper editor.
And finally, an Italian jeans maker persuaded the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in 2007 to register the word “Jesus” as a trademark, giving the company exclusive rights in America to sell clothing bearing that name. Now it is clamping down on more than a dozen other startup clothing lines it claims appropriated “Jesus” without the company’s blessing. Somehow, Moses jeans doesn’t sound as sexy.