First Day of the Conclave

All eyes are on Vatican City as 115 cardinals gather to elect the next leader of the world's estimated 1 billion Catholics. NPR's Neal Conan hosts a discussion of the process, the candidates and the secrecy surrounding, the election of a pope.

Guests:

David Willey, BBC's Rome correspondent

John-Peter Pham, author, Heirs of the Fisherman: Behind the Scenes of Papal Death and Succession. Former Vatican diplomat. Professor at James Madison University

Father Charles Curran, professor of Human Values at Southern Methodist University. Author of The Moral Theology Of Pope John Paul II. Was forced to leave his tenured teaching position at Catholic University in 1986 because he was at odds with the church on certain moral issues such as contraception, homosexuality and divorce

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