Conclave, fifth-grade edition

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St. Timothy School in Mesa posted this video two days before Pope Benedict XVI’s final day as the Church’s supreme leader. Check out whose fate their ballot determines.

Students at a Catholic school in Virginia held an authentic-sounding mock conclave to “elect” the new pope. They even took on names of cardinals who are in Rome right now making the same discernment. Their 34 cardinals “elected” Ghanaian Cardinal Peter Turkson as the new pontiff — he took the name Sebastian I. Time will tell if they were right on either decision.

According to the school pastor quoted in the article:

 “During the selection, they were very solemn. Every word mattered.”

A few other highlights from the article:

The “cardinals” spent two weeks learning about their specific role in the church and following media speculation about who was likely to replace Pope Benedict XVI.

Volunteers sewed costumes for the cardinals, made ballots in Latin, transformed the gym into the Sistine Chapel and built the balcony from which the new “pope” would greet the church.

During the “conclave,” the cardinals swore secrecy before casting their votes. A security team checked for recording devices before the cardinals processed in.

To show all aspects of the process, Father Zuberbueler designated a cardinal to be “sick,” so the students would see what happens if a cardinal is ill during the conclave.

If you’re still looking to learn more about the process of electing a pope, a sixth-grade teacher at St. John Bosco in Ahwatukee, prepared this PowerPoint to explain the details of a conclave.

In case you’re interested in text-heavier versions, here are some stories we have posted in recent weeks about the process:

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