The coat of arms of a cardinal (who is a bishop) is indicated by a red galero (wide-brimmed hat) with 15 tassels on each side (the motto and escutcheon are proper to the individual cardinal).
A 14th-century miniature symbolizing the schism
Cardinal Richelieu, chief minister of France
Map showing support for Avignon (red) and Rome (blue) during the Western Schism; this breakdown is accurate until the Council of Pisa (1409), which created a third line of claimants.
Cardinal Innitzer, Archbishop of Vienna and Cardinal-Priest of San Crisogono
Habemus Papam at the Council of Constance
Choir dress of a cardinal
Plaque commemorating the popes buried in St. Peter's. Alexanders VI, VII, and VIII are numbered as though the Pisan pope Alexander V were legitimate, but John XXIII (d. 1963) has reused the ordinal of the Pisan pope John XXIII.
Cardinal Sodano (1927-2022), Dean Emeritus of the college
Cardinal-priest Thomas Wolsey
Coat of arms of Cardinal Martino, current Cardinal Protodeacon
Reginald Pole was a cardinal for 18 years before he was ordained a priest.
A Cardinal in Profile, 1880, by Jehan Georges Vibert (Morgan Library and Museum, New York City)
alt=Théodore Adrien Cardinal  Sarr with a ferraiolo, and wearing a red cassock, but not the rest of the choir dress.|Cardinal Sarr with a ferraiolo and wearing a red cassock, but not the rest of the choir dress.
alt=Cardinals Walter Kasper (left) and Godfried Danneels (right) wearing their choir dress: scarlet (red) cassock, white rochet trimmed with lace, scarlet mozetta, scarlet biretta (over the usual scarlet zucchetto), and pectoral cross on cord.|Cardinals Walter Kasper (left) and Godfried Danneels (right) wearing their choir dress: scarlet (red) cassock, white rochet trimmed with lace, scarlet mozetta, scarlet biretta (over the usual scarlet zucchetto), and pectoral cross on cord.
alt=Tarcisio Cardinal Bertone in dress for hot tropical countries (white cassock with scarlet piping and buttons).|Cardinal Bertone in dress for hot tropical countries (white cassock with scarlet piping and buttons).

On 8 April 1378, the cardinals elected Bartolomeo Prignano, the archbishop of Bari, as Pope Urban VI.

- Western Schism

During the Western Schism, many cardinals were created by the contending popes.

- Cardinal (Catholic Church)
The coat of arms of a cardinal (who is a bishop) is indicated by a red galero (wide-brimmed hat) with 15 tassels on each side (the motto and escutcheon are proper to the individual cardinal).

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St. Peter's Basilica, the largest Catholic church in the world

Catholic Church

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Largest Christian church, with 1.3 billion baptised Catholics worldwide.

Largest Christian church, with 1.3 billion baptised Catholics worldwide.

St. Peter's Basilica, the largest Catholic church in the world
The first use of the term "Catholic Church" (literally meaning "universal church") was by the church father Saint Ignatius of Antioch in his Letter to the Smyrnaeans (c. 110 AD). Ignatius of Antioch is also attributed the earliest recorded use of the term "Christianity" (Χριστιανισμός) c. 100 AD. He died in Rome, with his relics located in the Basilica of San Clemente al Laterano.
This fresco (1481–82) by Pietro Perugino in the Sistine Chapel shows Jesus giving the keys of heaven to Saint Peter.
The Last Supper, a late 1490s mural painting by Leonardo da Vinci, depicting the last supper of Jesus and his twelve apostles on the eve of his crucifixion. Most apostles are buried in Rome, including Saint Peter.
Jesus' commission to Saint Peter
19th-century drawing by Henry William Brewer of Old Saint Peter's Basilica, originally built in 318 by Emperor Constantine
Chartres Cathedral, completed 1220
The Renaissance period was a golden age for Catholic art. Pictured: the Sistine Chapel ceiling painted by Michelangelo
Ruins of the Jesuit Reduction at São Miguel das Missões in Brazil
While, since the 1960s, Pope Pius XII has been accused of not having done enough to shelter Jews from the Holocaust, his defenders claim he secretly encouraged individual Catholic resistance groups, such as that led by priest Heinrich Maier. Maier helped the allies fight against the V-2, which was produced by concentration camp prisoners.
Members of the Canadian Royal 22e Regiment in audience with Pope Pius XII, following the Liberation of Rome in 1944 during World War II
Bishops listen during the Second Vatican Council
Pope John Paul II was credited as a major influence to the end of the Cold War and the fall of communism. Here with U.S. President Ronald Reagan and his wife, Nancy, in 1982.
Francis is the 266th and current pope of the Catholic Church, a title he holds ex officio as bishop of Rome, and sovereign of Vatican City. He was elected in the 2013 papal conclave.
C. 1210 manuscript version of the traditional Shield of the Trinity theological diagram
The Blessed Virgin Mary is highly regarded in the Catholic Church, proclaiming her as Mother of God, free from original sin and an intercessor.
Mass at the Grotto at Lourdes, France. The chalice is displayed to the people immediately after the consecration of the wine.
Baptism of Augustine of Hippo as represented in a sculptural group in Troyes Cathedral (1549), France
Pope Benedict XVI celebrates the Eucharist at the canonisation of Frei Galvão in São Paulo, Brazil on 11 May 2007
A Catholic believer prays in a church in Mexico
The Seven Sacraments Altarpiece triptych painting of Extreme Unction (Anointing of the Sick) with oil being administered by a priest during last rites. Rogier van der Weyden, c. 1445.
Priests lay their hands on the ordinands during the rite of ordination.
Wedding mass in the Philippines
Catholic religious objects – Holy Bible, crucifix and rosary
East Syrian Rite wedding crowning celebrated by a bishop of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church in India, one of the 23 Eastern Catholic Churches in full communion with the pope and the Catholic Church.
Saint Teresa of Calcutta advocated for the sick, the poor and the needy by practicing the acts of corporal works of mercy.
Allegory of chastity by Hans Memling
Pope Paul VI issued Humanae vitae on 25 July 1968.

The Avignon Papacy ended in 1376 when the pope returned to Rome, but was followed in 1378 by the 38-year-long Western schism, with claimants to the papacy in Rome, Avignon and (after 1409) Pisa.

The position of cardinal is a rank of honour bestowed by popes on certain clerics, such as leaders within the Roman Curia, bishops serving in major cities and distinguished theologians.

Cardinals in red vestments during the funeral of Pope John Paul II

College of Cardinals

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Cardinals in red vestments during the funeral of Pope John Paul II

The College of Cardinals, or more formally the Sacred College of Cardinals, is the body of all cardinals of the Catholic Church.

The total number of cardinals from 1099 to 1986 has been about 2,900 (excluding possible undocumented 12th-century cardinals and pseudocardinals appointed during the Western Schism by pontiffs now considered to be antipopes, and subject to some other sources of uncertainty), nearly half of whom were created after 1655.

Pope Francis in 2021

Pope

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Bishop of Rome (or historically the patriarch of Rome ), head of the worldwide Catholic Church, and also serves as head of state or sovereign of the Vatican City State since the eighth century.

Bishop of Rome (or historically the patriarch of Rome ), head of the worldwide Catholic Church, and also serves as head of state or sovereign of the Vatican City State since the eighth century.

Pope Francis in 2021
Gregory the Great (c. 540–604) who established medieval themes in the Church, in a painting by Carlo Saraceni, c. 1610, Rome.
A historical map of the Mediterranean states in 1400. The Western Schism lasted from 1378 to 1417.
As part of the Catholic Reformation, Pope Paul III (1534–49) initiated the Council of Trent (1545–63), which established the triumph of the papacy over those who sought to reconcile with Protestants or oppose papal claims.
The Delivery of the Keys painted by Pietro Perugino (1492)
The conclave in Konstanz where Pope Martin V was elected
The formal declaration of "Habemus Papam" after the election of Pope Martin V
Funeral of Pope John Paul II at the Vatican in April 2005, presided over by Cardinal Ratzinger, the future Pope Benedict XVI
Entrance to Vatican City, with inscription "Benedictus XVI Pont(ifex) Max(imus) Anno Domini MMV Pont(ificatus) I.", i.e., "Benedict XVI, Pontifex Maximus, in the year of Our Lord 2005, the first year of his pontificate."
The coat of arms of the Holy See. That of the State of Vatican City is the same except that the positions of the gold and silver keys are interchanged.
1881 illustration depicting papal infallibility
Pope Pius XII, wearing the traditional 1877 Papal tiara, is carried through St. Peter's Basilica on a sedia gestatoria c. 1955.
Pope Pius VII, bishop of Rome, seated, and Cardinal Caprara.
Antichristus, a woodcut by Lucas Cranach of the pope using the temporal power to grant authority to a generously contributing ruler
Antichristus, by Lucas Cranach the Elder, from Luther's 1521 Passionary of the Christ and Antichrist. The pope is signing and selling indulgences.
Christus, by Lucas Cranach. This woodcut of John 13:14–17 is from Passionary of the Christ and Antichrist. Cranach shows Jesus kissing Peter's foot during the footwashing. This stands in contrast to the opposing woodcut, where the pope demands others kiss his foot.
Antichristus, by the Lutheran Lucas Cranach the Elder. This woodcut of the traditional practice of kissing the pope's foot is from Passionary of the Christ and Antichrist.
Pope Pius IX, the pope with the longest verifiable reign
Pope Urban VII, the shortest-reigning pope

Popes also contended with the cardinals, who sometimes attempted to assert the authority of Catholic Ecumenical Councils over the pope's. Conciliarism holds that the supreme authority of the church lies with a General Council, not with the pope.

Various Antipopes challenged papal authority, especially during the Western Schism (1378–1417).

Pope John XXIII

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Head of the Catholic Church and sovereign of the Vatican City State from 28 October 1958 until his death in 1963.

Head of the Catholic Church and sovereign of the Vatican City State from 28 October 1958 until his death in 1963.

The young Roncalli
Roncalli as Patriarch of Venice
Commander of the Legion of Honour received in 1953
Pope John XXIII's coronation on 4 November 1958. He was crowned wearing the 1877 Palatine Tiara.
Monument to Pope John XXIII in Porto Viro (Rovigo)
John XXIII with Prime Minister of Lebanon Sami as-Solh, 1959
John XXIII greets sportsmen for the 1960 Summer Olympics on 28 August 1960.
Pope John XXIII on Time magazine cover of 4 January 1963
The original tomb of John XXIII (until 2000) in the Vatican necropolis.
The body of John XXIII in the altar of Saint Jerome
The canonization ceremony of John XXIII and John Paul II
Statue of John XXIII in Portugal

On 12 January 1953, he was appointed Patriarch of Venice and raised to the rank of Cardinal-Priest of Santa Prisca by Pope Pius XII.

This was the first time in over 500 years that this name had been chosen; previous popes had avoided its use since the time of the Antipope John XXIII during the Western Schism several centuries before.

Portrait of Martin V after Pisanello

Pope Martin V

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The head of the Catholic Church and ruler of the Papal States from 11 November 1417 to his death in 1431.

The head of the Catholic Church and ruler of the Papal States from 11 November 1417 to his death in 1431.

Portrait of Martin V after Pisanello
Pope Martin's election as pope. Chronicle of Ulrich of Richenthal.

His election effectively ended the Western Schism of 1378–1417.

He became apostolic protonotary under Pope Urban VI (1378–1389), and was created Cardinal-Deacon of San Giorgio in Velabro by Pope Innocent VII in 1405.