Oct. 14, 1978: Papal Conclave Begins

Following the death of Pope John Paul I, cardinals enter the second papal conclave of 1978.
2:12 | 03/12/13

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Transcript for Oct. 14, 1978: Papal Conclave Begins
111 Catholic cardinals -- they locked themselves inside the Sistine Chapel to deliberate. And tomorrow they began voting for the man who will succeed Pope John Paul the first. Their day began at saint Peter's basilica where they celebrated mass together bill Blakemore has a report. In good humor cardinals thought to be leading candidates took the crush of interest as they emerged from their last pre conclave mass in saint Peter's. Giovanni the -- needing extra Vatican security just to get into his car. Seven by some to be a leading candidate because in addition to being one of the Vatican's most capable administrators he also has a winning smile. Berkeley police chief chief Vatican church law expert whose brilliant scholarship and lively would often bring laughter from his colleagues with jokes told in Cicero -- -- Latin. Colorado urgency of Naples -- for his extensive pastoral experience in the south and is widely heralded support of the poor in his region. Salvatore a -- -- of Sicily whose qualifications include the combination of great pastoral experience. With proven administrative abilities but as is the case with the unique papal election process. Guesses about the outcome can never be more than that as cardinal John -- -- Philadelphia indicates. Growing feeling about. The way things are very remove. In the late afternoon here the cardinals gathered again in the Pauline chapel. And then with the singing of the Sistine Chapel choir in formal procession entered their conclave. The term from the old Latin words calm and -- -- meaning with keys to be locked into the Sistine Chapel in the nearby temporary apartments. In strict security completely shut off from the world they will vote here four times a day starting tomorrow morning. They will listen to the results of each of the anonymous ballots and reconsider and vote again until they finally give more than two thirds of the votes to one math. It is finally this secrecy which makes a papal election so unpredictable. And intriguing in this -- of usually instant communication. There is no way to tell how group dynamics or psychology or the holy spirit. Will affect the college of cardinals once they go into their deliberations. Protected by their own vows never to reveal the details of the voting. Bill Blakemore ABC news Vatican City.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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