When the pope resigns…. did you know?

This is the current insignia/logo of the Vatican during the papacy of Benedict XVI. The symbolism shows the “keys of the kingdom” (Matthew 16:18) and the papal tiara indicating that there is a pope in office. But what happens at the sede vacante on Feb 28th when Pope Benedict resigns and the chair of Peter is vacant?

Turns out that the papal “logo” is replaced with the ombrellino (the little umbrella). The ombrellino will replace the papal tiara over the crossed keys of the Vatican “logo” until a new pope is elected. This symbolizes both the lack of a Pope and also the governance of the Camerlengo over the temporalities of the Holy See. As further indication, the Camerlengo ornaments his arms with this symbol during this period, which he subsequently removes once a pope is elected.

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