Picking Popes: Conclaves, the Papacy, and the Catholic Church

Podcast-style audio & video course -
Length: 1 hrs and 15 mins
Professor of History, Kean University
(1 customer review)
Audio Download + Subscription
$0.00
Audio Download + Subscription
$0.00
Includes Free Study Guide
Audio Download + Subscription
$0.00

The election of a pope doesn’t happen often, but when it does, the whole world—believers and non-believers—stops to watch. The first question is: what happens now? The answer is surprisingly straightforward: there is a system in place that is followed step by step.

But then the questions tumble one after the other: Why do the cardinals have the exclusive right to pick the popes? How did the “bad” Renaissance Medicis get chosen? What were the longest and shortest conclaves? If everything is supposed to be so secretive, how do we know so much about past conclaves—or is this just rumor and gossip, propaganda and punditry? Can a pope be deposed? Have any resigned or been assassinated? What if a pope becomes incapacitated—who’s in charge then?

This concise, three-segment audio series by award-winning Catholic historian Christopher Bellitto is designed to thoughtfully answer your questions. In Picking Popes, Dr. Bellitto reviews the colorful history of picking popes, conclaves, and cardinals. You’ll find plenty of anecdotes and analyses from a history professor who works with

The election of a pope doesn’t happen often, but when it does, the whole world—believers and non-believers—stops to watch. The first question is: what happens now? The answer is surprisingly straightforward: there is a system in place that is followed step by step.

But then the questions tumble one after the other: Why do the cardinals have the exclusive right to pick the popes? How did the “bad” Renaissance Medicis get chosen? What were the longest and shortest conclaves? If everything is supposed to be so secretive, how do we know so much about past conclaves—or is this just rumor and gossip, propaganda and punditry? Can a pope be deposed? Have any resigned or been assassinated? What if a pope becomes incapacitated—who’s in charge then?

This concise, three-segment audio series by award-winning Catholic historian Christopher Bellitto is designed to thoughtfully answer your questions. In Picking Popes, Dr. Bellitto reviews the colorful history of picking popes, conclaves, and cardinals. You’ll find plenty of anecdotes and analyses from a history professor who works with the media during papal transitions.

You’ll get an inside look at one of the most intriguing tasks of the world’s oldest and longest-surviving monarchy—the papacy—which, surprisingly, is led by a man who is voted into power by his peers.

This course is part of the Learn25 collection and includes a free PDF study guide.

This course was previously published as Picking Popes: Conclaves

Learn about downloadable programs.

Your Free Electronic Study Guide! When you order this course, we will send you a free electronic study guide that you can access in 3 convenient ways:

1) You can check your order confirmation email. It will include a link that enables you to download your guide.
2) The back of your program package also contains a copy of this link. You can access your guide by simply entering this URL into your browser.
3) Your case of CDs or DVDs will contain a copy of your electronic guide on CD. Simply insert this disc into your computer’s CD/DVD drive to access your guide.

$13.99

Frequently Bought Together

  • From Desert Asceticism to Vatican II: The 2,000 Year History of Christian Reform

    From Desert Asceticism to Vatican II: The 2,000 Year History of Christian Reform

    $23.99
    Select options
  • Catholic Evangelization Today: The Good News in Modern Times

    Catholic Evangelization Today: The Good News in Modern Times

    $19.99
    Select options
  • Sale! The History of the Catholic Church: Tradition and Innovation

    The History of the Catholic Church: Tradition and Innovation

    $57.99$79.99
    Select options
  • Arrayed in Crimson: Martyrdom and Persecution in the Early Church

    Arrayed in Crimson: Martyrdom and Persecution in the Early Church

    $17.99$159.99
    Select options

Dr. Christopher M. Bellitto, Ph.D., is an award-winning historian and Professor of History at Kean University in New Jersey. He received a Ph.D. in History from Fordham University. He is the author of ten books and the co-editor of six others; his writing has been honored by the American Catholic Historical Association and the Catholic Press Association. A frequent public speaker and media commentator on Church history and contemporary Catholicism, he has appeared on the History and Travel channels, CNN, MSNBC, NPR, and other radio and television stations. He has received a National Endowment for the Humanities grant and is on the Fulbright Specialist Roster.Dr. Bellitto’s books include Ageless Wisdom: Lifetime Lessons from the Bible (Paulist Press, 2016), 101 Questions and Answers on Popes and the Papacy (Paulist Press, 2008), The Living Church and Church History 101 (Liguori Publications, 2011, 2008), and the companion volumes Renewing Christianity: A History of Church Reform from Day One to Vatican II and The General Councils: A History of the 21 Church Councils from Nicaea to Vatican II (Paulist Press, 2001-2002). His articles have appeared in Catholic Historical Review, Church History, Revue d’histoire ecclésiastique, Cristianesimo nella storia, America, Commonweal, U.S. Catholic, and other journals and magazines. Dr. Bellitto also serves as series Editor-in-Chief of Brill’s Companions to the Christian Tradition.

Praise for Christopher Bellitto

“Christopher Bellitto is one of the most compelling and accessible Church historians working today. He brings together the skills of a journalist with scholar’s expertise.”
– Dr. C. Colt Anderson, Dean, Fordham University“One discovers in Professor Bellitto that all too rare combination of scholarly expertise and exquisite communicator. His lectures weave humor with erudition, prophetic challenge with passion for the people of God, and historical objectivity with deep care for the Church.”
– Dr. Elena Procario-Foley, Iona College“Dynamic and accessible, Professor Christopher Bellitto breathes life into Church history in ways that resonate with the experiences of contemporary audiences. Weaving solid scholarship with engaging stories he brings fresh perspectives to the events and people that influence the rich diversity of the Roman Catholic tradition.”
– Dr. Carmen Nanko-Fernández, Catholic Theological Union“Prof. Christopher Bellitto is an outstanding scholar who is widely admired for his great clarity as well as for the depth and breadth of his knowledge. Prof. Bellitto is an excellent guide in all matters of church history, and has a special gift for presenting complex realities in a compelling and clear manner.”
– Mary Doak, University of San Diego“Master teacher, expert scholar, and superb communicator, Bellitto presents exquisitely masterful interpretations of the significance of the various eras of Church history that enlighten and delight. Media commentator on all things papal and episcopal, Bellitto captures the importance of the meaning of the past for the Church in the contemporary moment.”
– Elena Procario-Foley, Iona College“Prof. Bellitto is one of the best contemporary historians of Christian history. His profound knowledge of the subject matter, decades of teaching, eloquent and effective communication skills, make his work an indispensable reference for anyone interested in the thousand year-old Christian story.”
– Ines Angeli Murzaku Ph.D., Seton Hall University

  • What Happens When a Pope Dies?
  • Conclaves and Cardinals: A History
  • Difficult Questions

1 review for Picking Popes: Conclaves, the Papacy, and the Catholic Church

  1. Deacon Pat

    Well worth viewing

    I really enjoyed these three lectures. Professor Bellitto presents the material in an engaging manner. I expected a dull pedantic presentation. I was delighted by his engaging style. A few charts, maps & photos would have added somewhat to the presentation. I intend to use it for a three week adult Ed program at my parish this fall.

Add a review

Bundles

  • Sale! conclaves-benedict

    Bundle: Picking Popes: Conclaves + Benedict XVI: Theologian and Preacher – 7 CDs Total

    $39.95
    Read more
  • Sale! 2000-years-picking-popes-narrow

    Bundle: 2,000 Years of Papal History + Picking Popes: Conclaves – 15 CDs Total

    $54.95
    Read more
  • Sale! Bundle

    Video Bundle: The Reformations + Picking Popes: Conclaves – 5 DVDs Total

    $84.95
    Read more

Learn25 is removing PayPal as a checkout option effective June 15, 2022.

We apologize for any inconvenience. If you need to add an alternate payment method, you may do so in Your Account.

Don’t hesitate to Contact Us if you need help adding an alternate payment option.

Stay in the know.

Enter your email address for a free coupon, and to find out about future specials and promotions. You may unsubscribe at any time.

Now You Know Media is now Learn25

In an effort to provide our customers the best possible experience, we have created a new website for you at Learn25.com to browse our selection of over 400 audio and video courses by top professors.