Through prayer and praise at a special morning mass, students and faculty at Belen Jesuit in Miami say they feel just as close to the Vatican, where 115 cardinals are convening to pick a new pope.
"This is a big moment for our faith, what's decided today and over the next couple of days really determines the future for a long time," senior Oscar Cabanas said.
"Our hearts and prayers are going to go out to all of the cardinals as they enter the conclave, that they be guided by the Holy Spirit in making a decision which is right for the church and in accordance with God's will," Deacon Rob O'Malley said.
Deacon O'Malley is a relative of Boston's Cardinal Sean O'Malley, considered one of the contenders for the job.
"I know that with my cousin as well as the other cardinals, this is a time of deep reflection and prayer, because they feel the awesome responsibility that they have," he said.
Part of the weight means pulling the church out of the shadows of recent sex scandals.
"I think the church is in a time of some turmoil and a great leader would be someone who can take the proper reforms and bring the church back to prominence," Belen Jesuit senior Diego Rosette said.
Students say they're looking forward to new, more modern leadership.
"I want somebody that I can connect to, someone that can connect to my generation, even though the church is very tradition institution, maybe someone that can connect with people like me that are younger," Rosette said.
Schedule of Voting During the Papal Conclave
"I think he should be younger like Pope John Paul was and really lead us into modern times, have the world's youth day that Pope John Paul the Second had and be more attached to the youth because that's the future," Cabanas said.
All eyes will be on the smoke stack at the Vatican, where white puffs will indicate that a new pope has been chosen. It will take a two-thirds majority to declare the next pope.