Sunday, April 03, 2005

Vatican to Issue New Stamp

VATICAN CITY (Associated Press) — The Vatican post office said Saturday it will issue a special stamp, which can be used only until a new pope is elected. Pope John Paul II died Saturday.

According to tradition, the "vacant See" stamp will carry an image of two crossed keys but no papal miter. The traditional image on Vatican stamps issued while a pope is alive includes the keys and the headdress.

The stamps are valid for the "interregnum," the timespan that begins with the death of a pope and ends when a new one is elected, but other Vatican stamps also will be valid in that period.

The last time the Vatican post office issued such a stamp was 1978, when the first Pope John Paul died.
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posted by Don Schilling at 1:42 PM