White Smoke Signifies Election Of New Pope

Cardinals elected a new pope just before 11 a.m. Tuesday after casting a fourth ballot since they began the papal selection conclave Monday.

There was some initial confusion about whether a pope had been elected, because the bells of St. Peter’s Basilica were not immediately rung, as Vatican officials said.

When bells did ring, it was 6 p.m. in Rome, an hour when bells are regularly rung.

But a few minutes after 11 a.m. CDT the approriate bells were rung.

The 115 cardinals voted again early Tuesday morning CDT, but failed then to produce the two-thirds majority required to elect a new pope.

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The crowd gathered in St. Peter’s Square cheered as it became apparent the smoke was white, rather than the black smoke the pilgrims saw Monday and earlier in the day Tuesday.

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