Yet while the world will primarily notice the familiar four rows of tables lining the chapel's sides to the rood screen, the most intense piece of the preparation literally begins at ground level – as in 2005, a whole-room platform will be built to lift the floor and provide for the installation of a warren of signal-jammers underneath to ensure that the voting site is kept free of any attempt at wireless communication.Charles Pierce at his Esquire blog asks why the intense emphasis on secrecy.
The jammers likewise surrounded the Domus Sancta Marthae last time to maintain, but given the degree of technological evolution over the last eight years, the de-bugging operation at this Conclave – both to maintain its secrecy and keep the cardinals out of contact with the world – promises to be ever more intense, and is likely to include the confiscation of all devices belonging to the electors before the voting begins.
We are told repeatedly that the cardinal-electors fulfill their office at the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. (Even silly American TV reporters repeat this, whether they believe it or not.) That being the case, why is it necessary to cloak the work of the Spirit in secrecy? Scripture tells us that the Spirit is available to us all. It came upon the disciples and the first thing they did was run right out and proclaim it, gobsmacking the daylights out of the people who'd come to Jerusalem just to buy a goat or two.