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Sistine Chapel closed as preparations begin for conclave

CWN - March 05, 2013

The Sistine Chapel was closed to tourists on Tuesday, March 5, as Vatican workers began preparing for a papal conclave.

The Sistine Chapel, where the cardinal-electors will meet to vote for the new Pope, will be cleaned and thoroughly swept for any electronic listening devices before the tables and chairs are installed to accommodate the 115 cardinals who will enter the conclave.

No date has yet been set for the opening of the conclave. For the last such gathering in 2005, after the death of Blessed John Paul II, the Sistine Chapel was closed one week before the conclave began.

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