- The Washington Times - Friday, March 1, 2013

The mood in Rome in the wake of Pope Benedict XVI’s resignation and departure is melancholy, said Cardinal Timothy Dolan.

On one hand, everyone is “eager to have a new pope,” he said, in The New York Post. “We don’t like the chair of St. Peter to be empty. There’s a sadness in Rome.”

But on the other hand, “we know that it takes a little time and prayer, and reflection and discussion,” he said, in The Post.

His comments come one day after the pope resigned, the first pope in 600 years to do so. His resignation was made official at 2 p.m. Eastern Time, after he took a pope helicopter to Castel Gandolfo, his summer papal residence, and his personal protection force, the Swiss Guards, went off duty. Now, the College of Cardinals will meet between four and five hours a day to discuss the replacement, Mr. Dolan said, in the Post.

“We want a pope, and we want a pope fast,” he said. And he joked: Cardinals “have full-time jobs” and want to be home before March 24 and Holy Week.

“So please God, we’ll have a pope before then,” he said, in the Post.

SEE ALSO: Pope Benedict says goodbye, promises ‘obedience’ to successor

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