February 18, 2013

Who runs the Vatican after the pope steps down?

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The dome of St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City.  Photo by Rene Shaw.

The dome of St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City. Photo by Rene Shaw.

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VATICAN CITY (RNS) As of 8 p.m. Thursday, the Vatican will go into "sede vacante'' mode -- a Latin expression that means that the seat of St. Peter is vacant. Here's what will happen and who rules the church during the "interregnum" between two popes.