Pope Francis said today that clergy who were “careerists” or “social climbers” were doing serious damage to the Catholic Church, his latest ut(...)

Man of the people: Cardinal Bergoglio drinks mate, a traditional beverage, in Buenos Aires earlier this  month. Photograph: DyN/AP Photo

It was Benedict who did it. There has never been an interregnum like the one just experienced by the Catholic Church, a period that led to the(...)

Pope Francis waves from the steps of the Santa Maria Maggiore Basilica in Rome yesterday, as he went for a half-hour personal moment of prayer. Photograph: Alessandro Bianchi

As you might expect, the mood in the Domus Santa Marta, the Vatican lodgings where all the cardinals stay during a conclave, was a festive one (...)

NEW YORK TIMES : “With a puff of white smoke from the chimney of the Sistine Chape(...)

Black smoke rises from the chimney on the Sistine Chapel this morning. Photograph: Reuters

Black smoke rose from the Vatican's Sistine Chapel today, signalling Catholic cardinals had not agreed on a pope to succeed Benedict on their(...)

Italian cardinal and Milan archbishop Angelo Scola leads a mass at the Santi Apostoli church  in Rom.  (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

Cardinal Angelo Scola, the Archbishop of Milan and arguably the leading Italian candidate to become pope, more than 30 years ago participated i(...)

The sun sets behind St Peter's Basilica in St Peter's Square in the Vatican this evening. Cardinals are set to enter the conclave to elect a successor to Pope Benedict XVI tomorrow. Photograph: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images.

The talking is over, it is now time to vote. The Cardinals this morning held their tenth and last “Congregazione Generale” prior to going into (...)

Black smoke billows out from a chimney on the roof of the Sistine Chapel indicating that the College of Cardinals have failed to elect a new Pope. Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images.

Thick black smoke billowed into the night sky from the Sistine Chapel's chimney tonight, signalling an inconclusive first vote in the conclave (...)

Sri Lanka's Cardinal Albert Malcolm Ranjith, Archbishop of Colombo, arrives to lead Mass at the San Lorenzo In Lucino church in Rome today. With the vast majority of Catholics now living outside Europe, there is growing pressure for a pontiff from another part of the world. Photograph: Chris Helgren/Reuters

Roman Catholic cardinals prayed today for spiritual guidance ahead of a closed-door conclave to choose a new pope to lead the church at one of (...)

Members of the fire and rescue service set a chimney on the roof of the Sistine Chapel. Photograph: Dylan Martinez/Reuters

Vatican workers hoisted a chimney onto the roof of the Sistine Chapel on Saturday in readiness for the conclave of Catholic cardinals that will(...)