The 10 years of Pope Francis: what is the “Room of Tears”, the most intimate place in the Vatican

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Exactly ten years ago, amid deep secrecy and mystery, the Vatican announced a George Bergoglio like New Pope francesco. The news moved the world and especially Argentina, which celebrated the assumption of the then cardinal.

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One of the most intimate moments of the conclave is when the new Pope retires to the sacristy of the Sistine Chapel, known as “of tears”to meditate and put on one of the three white tunics already prepared, before presenting himself to the faithful in the St. Peter’s Square.

After having accepted – on this occasion – to be the 266 successor of the apostle Peter, the chosen cardinal goes to the small room to the left of the main altar of the Sistine Chapel, under the “Final judgement” by Michelangelo.

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The sacristy is known as the “Hall of Tears” for those that the recently elected Popes have poured into it in the course of history, for the emotion of the moment, for the tension accumulated in the days of the conclave or for the weight that is falling upon it.

The “Room of Tears” is closed to the public and is not part of the itinerary of the faithful and tourists who visit the Chapel every day.

The hall aims to offer a space for reflection and prayer for the new Pope. It has been used by every new pontiff, including Pope Francis.who spent a few minutes in the room before appearing on the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica for the first time in 2013.

On its walls there are numerous traces of frescoes, paintings that stand out among the white of the walls. It is furnished with a table, on which a small image of the Madonna and Child is placed, and a red velvet sofa.

Pope Francis during an interview at the Vatican.  AP Photo

Pope Francis during an interview at the Vatican. AP Photo

Part of the decoration is a large crucifix, of a pastoral type, standing. The floor is ceramic and connects to the Sistine Chapel through a narrow corridor.

There, placed on a rack, it finds three tunicsone small, one medium and one large, as well as three pairs of shoes of different sizes, the stole and the red cape and other items of papal equipment (shirts, stockings…).

Alone, in silence, he tries on clothes and chooses the one that fits him best, while only he will know what crosses his mind at that moment, while in the Sistine Chapel the cardinals prepare to receive him already dressed as Pope.

The tunics and other garments are made by the Gammarelli tailoring,
of Rome, which for years has seen the Popes.

Already dressed in white, the new pontiff returns to the chapel, where he is received with a long round of applause to the cardinalswho one by one approaches to present his obedience.

Meanwhile, the cardinal protodeacon goes to the blessing loggia of St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican to announce to the people of God and the city of Rome that there is now a new Pope and Bishop of the Eternal City.

He does so following the ritual “Annuntio vobi gaudium magnum; habemus Papam”.

The new pontiff, for his part, leaves the Sistine Chapel and goes to the Pauline chapel, a few meters away, to pray before the Blessed Sacrament.

Source: EFE

Source: Clarin

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