Pope Benedict | St. Louis Public Radio

Pope Benedict

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Black smoke appeared again Wednesday from the chimney of the Sistine chapel, signaling that no pope has been elected yet. The first vote was taken Tuesday. After two more ballots this morning, the second and third of this conclave, the Cardinals went to lunch. They are expected to take two more rounds of voting this afternoon unless the 115 cardinals give one man 77 votes in the next round. 

By this weekend, the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics might have a new pope.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Today at 10:07 a.m. St. Louis time,  a helicopter bearing Pope Benedict XVI, the 265th pope, lifted off from the Vatican Gardens to fly 15 miles southeast to Castel Gandolfo on the shores of Lake Albano. The estate with beautiful formal gardens usually serves as the papal summer home because it is cooler, well, slightly cooler than Rome.

There at least until May, under the name of “His Holiness, Benedict XVI the Pope Emeritus,” he is expected to continue a life of prayer and writing. But Wednesday he said that his will not be a “life of privacy.”

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: Olan Horne, 48, a survivor of clerical sex abuse, believes that Pope Benedict XVI's visit to the United States marks a turning point in the way victims of sexual abuse are treated in the Catholic Church.

"I saw it in his face, heard his voice. He understands," said Horne, one of six survivors who met Thursday with the pope. Horne spoke with the St. Louis Beacon from his Massachusetts university food service office.