Catholics gather at St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church and wait for news of new pope

March 13, 2013 11:33:25 AM PDT
Like the rest of the world, Houston-area Catholics are monitoring the conclave closely, eagerly anticipating the election of a new pope.

Much like Catholics around the world, parishioners at St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church in southwest Houston woke up wishing for white smoke from the Vatican, to signal a decision from the College of Cardinals, on a new pope.

"The most important thing is just that we pray for whoever the new pope is and that they be open to the action of the Holy Spirit," said parishioner Daniel Murphy.

Something different about the pope's election this time around is that we are in an age of technology and social media.

"Have you done fantasy pope," we asked. "Have you heard of that?"

"I sure did," said Edwin Tecarro

"The pope alarm on your cell phone, I do have that going on. So, I should be getting a text when we get white smoke," said parishioner Victor Saenz.

Catholics aren't mourning the loss of a predecessor. In a rare move, Pope Benedict XVI announced his retirement last month, something that hasn't happened over 600 years.

So the events surrounding this conclave are more upbeat. That's giving way for talk of more change when it comes to who fills the papal vacancy.

"I think it'd be great to get maybe some different perspectives, possibly someone from Latin America," said Saenz.

"Change takes courage and each one of us needs to support our Catholic Church," said another parishioner.

"I'm hoping for a younger pope so that he will be there for a long time," said parishioner Ruth Agraz.

These voting Cardinals were all appointed by either Pope Benedict XVI of Germany, or his predecessor John Paul II, the first Polish pope. We'll find out soon enough who will lead the Catholic Church.
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