There was a time when selecting a Pope was a matter of world politics.

There was a time when who was going to become Pope was cause for murder or even war.

There was a time when the Pope was not in Rome.

There was even a time when there were two Popes at the same time. Or a Pope and an Anti-Pope.

The Papacy is less turbulent these days. But it is probably turbulent in the conclave.

Once upon a time, the Pope lived here:

The Pope's Palace in Avignon
The Pope’s Palace in Avignon at sunset. Built in the 14th century, copyright BKWine Photography

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