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Vatican: Papal conclave could happen sooner than Mar. 15

Updated: Saturday, February 16 2013, 12:21 PM EST
Vatican: Papal conclave could happen sooner than Mar. 15 story image
VATICAN CITY (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - The Vatican is raising the possibility that the conclave to elect the new Pope might start earlier than March 15th.

That is the earliest possible date under the current rules that require a 15-to-20 day waiting period after the Pope's position becomes vacant.

A Vatican spokesman says they're looking into whether or not a rule change is possible.

The 15-to-20 day rule is in place to allow time for the arrival of Rome for Cardinals who are absent.

The Vatican says, however, that the Cardinals were well aware of the Pope's resignation and can get to Rome in plenty of time.
Vatican: Papal conclave could happen sooner than Mar. 15
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