Mar 12, 2013 7:37 AM by Rebecca Taylor
TUCSON - After a week of informal meetings, the College of Cardinals are set for their traditional conclave to pick a new pope.
The cardinals will convene Tuesday morning, around 8:30 Tucson time.
It's a necessary gathering since Pope Benedict the XVI stepped down, February 28th.
He cited his age and failing health.
Given the title, Pope Emeritus he'll retire to Vatican monastery which is now under renovation.
His successor will become the church's 226th pope.
In Tucson, parishioners call this an exciting time.
Many shared their personal feelings of what they'd like to see in the new pope.
Judy Triggs says, "well I hope that they will choose a pope that's more liberal than the last one. And will bring the church into the 21st century."
Susanna Gonzales says, "we need him to be more open, in some ways, not everything. There are some things we should know, but it's understandable not everything."
Father Manuel of St. Augustine Cathedral says, "hopefully a man of prayer, a man who has great love for the church and for God."
Father Manuel says the church is in new territory. It's been more than 600 years since a pope has resigned.
"We'll see what the guidance of the spirit is for the next pope. All of the men are different when they're elected, and they bring different gifts and talent to the life of the church," he says.
People from all walks of life will be following the conclave, even youngsters have heartfelt ideas on what they'd like the church's future to be.
Claudia Ratcliffe says, "I hope that the world is safe for us."
"And make sure the people in the world are doing safe things, not the wrong things," says Lilianna Chavez.
All day Monday, people have dropped by St. Augustine to say prayers, that the holy spirits guides the Catholic Cardinals in Rome.