Cardinals Gather In Secret Conclave to Elect a New Pope

All those cardinals in a confined space.  Think about that — 115 geriatric old codgers gathered together without proper sanitary facilities and no possibility of a shower.  I’d say after a day or two it gets fairly ripe in the Sistine Chapel as all those overweight,  unshaven old guys in heavy robes begin to turn sour.  Christ Almighty!  Who’d want to be trapped in that nest of sweaty vipers as they shaft each other in the most Christian way?


Think about the psychology of it: the last man standing walks away with the big job, but he’s going to know who voted for him and who didn’t, who spoke in his favour and who stayed quiet, so this is the ultimate poker game, especially for the guys who are regarded as papabile.  They’re the real players, eyeing each other up, watching through slitty eyes as the sweat runs down their faces and they wait until the music stops before going for their guns.

Now, here’s what I want to know.  How do they get along with each other, trapped inside the chapel?  When they’re not praying, or chanting, or backstabbing, how do they pass the long, long hours?  Do they break up into different factions? The bodybuilding cardinals over there in that corner, comparing pecs and tats, looking mean and waving nasty little sharpened crucifixes at the other inmates?  The nerdy cardinals wearing Slayer t-shirts,  huddled in a corner, reciting the Creed in  Klingon and asking each other hard questions about World of Popecraft.  The sporty cardinals with their long-running game of Fantasy Pontiff.

They have no TV, no internet and no phones, but have they any drink?  Is there anything in the rules about getting shitfaced while locked into the Sistine Chapel?  It seems perfectly reasonable to me, if you were locked into a room with 114 other sweaty, unshaven old men, that you’d at least be allowed to swig from a hip flask, and here’s the thing: supposing they couldn’t actually bring alcohol into the room?  What then?  Well, these guys are extremely high-powered priests.  Turbo-prelates.  It would be a simple matter for them to wave their hands at a bottle of wine and turn it into the body and blood of Jesus.

Is some officious Swiss Guard going to stop them?  You can’t bring alcohol in here.

It’s not alcohol.  I changed it into a deity.

Argue with that, if you can, Mr Swiss Guard.  Hmm!

How do they pass the time?  Do they play cards, and if so, is it for money or what?  I’ll see your holy communion class and raise you an altar-boy.  Do they listen to music?  What music?  The angels want to wear my red shoes?

Where do they sleep?  Did someone lay out 115 camp beds, and do they all go to sleep at the same time?  Do they take their cassocks off?  Do they change their socks?  Do  they all promise not to fart?

Normally, when you put a crowd of guys together in a room, they stay awake most of the night calling each other names and telling dirty jokes, but do the Cardinals do this, and if so, are all the jokes in Latin?

Civile, si ergo

Fortibus in ero.

Gnoses Annni, thebe trux

Vatis is inem? Causan dux.


You might think it’s trivial, but I want some sort of feeling for what these old guys get up to during the night, and I want to know this.  If they’re sequestered away from the world, unable to contact anyone, how do they get their food?  Who gives it to them?  Is it pushed under a door on the end of a long stick?  Do they order pizzas?

Now.  What about the voting?  There’s no official list of candidates, so they each get a slip of paper where they have to write the name of their preferred pope, and that’s because the whole thing is guided by the Holy Spirit, which of course is why a sweaty old man, elected by 114 other sweaty old men, is really the leader chosen by God.  However, given that the entire thing takes place in private and in secrecy, wouldn’t you think it would be much simpler to put a list of the cardinals up on the wall and simply get the Holy Spirit to fire a bolt of lightning at the right name?  Wouldn’t that short-circuit things and leave no doubt, not to mention suspicion that some of the cardinals were nobbled, intimidated, senile or downright corrupt?

For that matter, why do they all need to be together, physically, in the sweaty, fetid, fart-poisoned atmosphere of the Sistine Chapel?  Why not just set up a secure Vatinet and let them vote electronically?  Clearly, this network would be impossible to hack, since the Holy Spirit is guiding the whole thing anyway.  Bob’s your uncle.

The question is, who’s your pope?




34 replies on “Cardinals Gather In Secret Conclave to Elect a New Pope”

A priest once told me, that, “old man farts are much more disgusting than alter boy farts, but luckily, your sense of smell deteriorates with age”.

Was there a hint of it being a South American Pope, in that Benny addressed the crowd in Spanish? Bock, you raised some very interesting questions there, I hadn’t thought of all those strange circumstances before.
As you said, they’ll know who voted which way themselves.

Another version of your Fortibus joke

Si Senor, der dego, forte lorez inaro, demarn lorez, demar trux – fuluv coxen gezen dux.

Has to be said with a Cork (City) accent!

Didn’t they erect a chimney stack to omit smoke to let the crowds know how the vote is going?
I reckon the smoke is from copious amounts of ganje, as they pray to Bob Marley to let them know the winner.
Whoever smokes the most weed is the winner of the popedom.
Actually I think they’re gone off to some hotel to talk holy shit and get sozzled.
“Holy shit, will we ever get the flock outta here” haha

I have a feeling that they have hot and cold running acolytes – fart-catchers, if you will – looking after their every bodily need. I’m sure we don’t have to be worrying about their comfort.

Some of them are not adverse to the occasional ‘gang-bang’ I’d say. Yes, thats how some of them likely will get through a lull in the proceedings.

Ha, ha. It’s years since I saw the question, ‘Vatis is inem?’ There is nothing like a non-classical education.

The proceedings currently underway in rome have as much relevance as the moscow state circus but with less entertainment value and a far bigger wardrobe budget.

The new el duce will call for peace in the middle east and it will be so……….as soon as the inhabitants of the middle east know and accept that this is the word of the almighty……according to the bloke in the stupid hat.

blessed are the meek……..thats nice innit……..they don’t get much………..

You don’t actually think they’re all in there, doing what you said?
When the Sistine Chapel was built, all this bollocks about voting the new guy in had been thought about. There’s a secret entrance, over-painted by Mick Angelo and Co, that allows their holinesses access to the luxury hotel, La Vaticana, that’s located in back of the Chapel. H & C running, VatSat telly, 24 hour room service ( non-stop champers, food, boys, personal services etc).
A simple game of strip poker suffices for the vote on who gets the top job, after they’ve gorged themselves on life’s “little” luxuries.
By the way, nice to see you back on form dear boy.

Loved the funny Youtube clip…. nuff said .. it sums it all up for me…
Suppose they’ll have the last laugh, when their mothership lands at the Vatican City Space Pod station…

Bock, as usual your article is spot on an very amusing. But sorry to discappoint you on the sleeping arrangements. This is taken from

“Cardinals were in the past locked into areas around the Sistine Chapel, famed for its Michelangelo frescoes, and not allowed out until they had chosen a new pontiff.
But the rules changed before the 2005 conclave and the prelates now get to reside in a comfortable Vatican hotel while they are not voting in the chapel itself.
Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said the cardinal electors would draw lots to see which rooms they would sleep in, with all external contact, including emails and telephone calls, forbidden.”

By the way here are some interesting statistics on the 115:
-Only 5 of them (4%) are under 60
-73 if them (63%) are over 70
-The remaining 37 are in their 60s.

60 of them (52%) are Europeans, of which 27 (45%) are Italian.

58% of them were appointed by Benedict XVI and the rest by Jean-Paul II.

Gives us lots of reasons to be optimistic for change !!!

115 Cardinals packed together in the Sistine chapel. If only OBL were around to give the Catholic church the fresh start it needs. Calling all bearded mystics………………..

The truth of the matter is, the means by which a new Pope is elected goes a little something like this: All of the cardinals participating in the conclave actually spend a few days partaking of a karaoke contest. They perform karaoke renditions of entire musicals including the likes of ‘Joseph And The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat’ and ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’. The Holy Spirit then chooses who it believes to be the oustanding performer and this individual then becomes installed as the new Karaoke King. This explains all the tightly guarded secrecy.

Hi Bock, Isn’t it great all the same the way you are able to insult all the Catholic Cardinals and Catholics generally. For quite some time it has been the fashion among trendy lefties and “liberals” to sneer at the Catholic Church. I find it amazing just how illiberal the so called liberals actually are. You would not be so quick to sneer if it were a bunch of Arabs with tea towels on their heads. There is a great deal of hypocrisy and double standards at play here. This is politically correct bullshit. If I were to complain about a bunch of sweaty arabs or maybe a crowd of smelly tinkers, you would call me a racist but the liberal agenda allows you to attack and ridicule certain sections of society which the same liberal agenda has decided are fair game. Give over this crap Bock, surely you’re better than this.

Why do people like you always trot out the Arab thing without checking their facts? Do you have it printed on a card somewhere?

Another geriatric won.
He’s 76. Francis I he’s calling himself.

“Isn’t it great all the same the way you are able to insult all the Catholic Cardinals and Catholics generally”

Hi Fonsie, yes. Tis fucking brilliant.
In fairness they’re a bunch of irrelevant old codgers who provide a bit of a comic relief if nothing else.

It’s so nice to be a total Atheist who has decide come the day it will be an eternity of nothing

In fairness to Fonsie he did mention smelly tinkers as well as a bunch of arabs.

@ The cross dressing rancher – Is ageism cool now amongst the politically correct?
Or are you just another old codger yourself, slagging off your own peers?

Yes Maurice, ban all religion and if they don’t stop practicing whatever religion they believe in, put them all in jail, or better still, kill them all!
Spare us all from the Maurice’s of this world. Or are we now entering the spring time of fundamentalist atheism.

Fonsie: im sure no one will have a problem with you or anyone else attacking Arabs with a terrorist/evil agenda

Much the same as going against the Catholic Church and their agenda

I would only consider it racist if you painted everyone with the same brush and never considered how many good kind natured Arabs there are in the world

No rational people have a problem with true believers as long as their actions dont affect the rest of us

So by all means, work away, just figure out what your point is first

Dear Bock, I am not sure what you mean by

“Why do people like you always trot out the Arab thing without checking their facts? Do you have it printed on a card somewhere?”

Maybe you could enlighten me?
Anyway I had another very quick look at your original post and saw it for what it is, a very easy and cheap shot at people who will not respond and which will, no doubt, delight your audience of sycophants and toadies. These will cheer you on and delight in your cleverness. “Fair play to Bock, the way he stuck it to them dirty Cardinals, Oh Bock’s the boy” If the intent of your post is to please these people well more luck to you, however as I said before, you are better than that. This post reminded me of a comedian, when, at a loss for anything funny to say, resorts to four letter words, which will, as everyone knows, always get a laugh.
I also must say I agree with Magwa Brawn, we are in the time of fundamentalist atheism, which is driven by the liberal agenda. Anything promoted by the Catholic Church must be bad and conversely, anything opposed by them must be good. This is why we will very shortly see abortion on demand, homosexual marriage and homosexual adoptions here in Ireland and anyone who opposes them is a backward ignoramus. You only have to listen to the likes of Ivana Bacik, in fact there is a theory going around that this was the reason that the Labour Party supported the last budget.

In fairness to Fonsie, I don’t recall him ever stating that he believed in a god in the first place. And it could be argued that the only ring kissing going on here, is from most of the commentators on this post

Fonsie, are you by any chance Father Fonsie from the LIT

Who correct me if I am wrong, tried to cut single mother allowance in the college

If so, at least you were always good for a loan out of the hardship fund

If you you only knew how many people went to you for a loan to buy drugs

Dear Bock, I hope you are well, I’m puzzled by your reply of

“Ah Fonsie, I could never enlighten you. Keep believing in your sky-fairy and keep kissing rings.”

Whether or not I believe in God is a matter entirely for myself but it surely has nothing to do with the arguments being put forward here. If you would like to argue the points then fine, argue away and I will try to defend my position and maybe we will both learn something and profit from the exchange. However, your attitude seems to be that if anyone doesn’t agree with your very narrow, blinkered view of the world, you dismiss them out of hand. Wise up Bock, as a better man than you once said “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy”
In fairness, you did not resort to outright abuse, (apart from the “keep kissing rings” comment, which I now realise can be variously construed). But even if I did not taker offence to this, your condescending tone is in itself insulting. One of your trolls did resort to downright abuse, calling me a backward ignoramus. I don’t have a problem with the “backtoworks” of this world, but you Bock, ….. I think I detect a certain level of intelligence which you are unfortunately stifling by pandering to these trolls. You should make allowances for the level of intelligence of your toadies and sycophants and not base your idea of yourself on how great they think you are. Take off the blinkers Bock, open your eyes, open your mind and embrace your Saviour. Only in this way will you know true happiness.

Fonsie, that is not trolling

You brought homosexuals and Arabs in to the conversation

And you call me a troll for the conclusions I came to based on these remarks

Would you like to address these remarks

Unless you can, I see them as nothing but the hate speak of a backwards Ignoramus

You could also answer my question too?

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