(Vatican Radio) The first General Congregation of the College of Cardinals has been convened for the morning of Monday, March 4th, at 9 o’clock in the New Synod Hall. A second session is scheduled for that same Monday afternoon at 5 o’clock. The Director of the Vatican Press Office, Fr. Federico Lombardi, SJ made the announcement during his daily briefing for journalists. Also during the briefing, Fr. Lombardi spoke of Benedict XVI’s evening and first day in retirement – the course of which was described in English by Fr. Thomas Rosica. Listen:
“We spoke with [Archbishop] Georg Ganswein this morning,” he said, “and he told us that [the Pope emeritus] had a very good night’s sleep.” Fr. Rosica went on to explain that the Pope – who has been playing the piano in the evenings of late, and is expected to return to continue that pastime in his retirement – on Thursday evening rather viewed two Italian newscasts on television. Fr. Rosica also relayed that, in the evening, after a supper and time at prayer, Benedict read some of the many messages that have come to him from well-wishers. Friday began with Mass at 7 AM, and was expected to involve quiet time, as well as a walk on the grounds of the retreat around 4 PM, during which the Pope was expected to recite his Rosary. Fr. Rosica also spoke of the reading material that Benedict has brought with him – including works ranging across the fields of theology, spirituality and history. Also announced during the press briefing was news that the Vatican Post Office already has ready the stamps marking the period sede vacante. Coins, however, have yet to be minted and will likely not be ready until May.