As the world waits for a new pope to greet crowds of the faithful in Vatican City this week, several people from the Triangle will be among them.
Warren County residents Jeanette and Alan Kimball are no strangers to St. Peter's Basilica. Twenty years ago, Alan Kimball was the military ataché at the U.S. Embassy in Rome, which still feels like home, the couple says.
"Even though we've done it over the years a number of times, the hair still stands up on the back of my neck when you look at all that history," Alan Kimball said.
Timothy Ahn and Michael Shuetz are Raleigh seminarians at Rome's North American College. They have seen Vatican City come alive in recent days with church leaders who are preparing to choose a new pope.
"You have a cardinal and a bishop, one after another, coming," Ahn said. "They're all residing here down the hallway. (It's) very interesting to have all that around us, keeps you on your toes."
Shuetz said he looks forward to the conclave and wants the church to choose someone "young and vibrant."
Jeanette Kimball agreed.
"(We want) someone young enough to carry and cure and lead during this time of so much opposition and things that are difficult for Catholics," she said.
Ahn said he was confident that the Holy Spirit would guide cardinals to make the right choice.