What if they ran a Conclave like a Science Fiction Convention? Really they are all dressed up with funny hats anyway. Instead of voting for a Hugo they vote for the pope. Plus the whole ballot burning and the stoves and chimney have a decidedly steampunk flavor. The papabile could set up tables to provide and autograph any books or pastoral letters they have written. Maybe the Cardinals could dress up as their favorite saints. A kind of Cardinal Occupy Sistine play (Cosplay).
Well maybe not.
Really what I would like to see is a ClaveCon where the faithful can get together and wait for white smoke. Again you could have the fun aspects of a Science Fiction convention in dressing up and instead of Klingon’s and Anime characters there is certainly a treasury of Catholic history to pull from. Maybe even dress as your favorite Cardinal that you want to be pope. People trying to break into the Cardinal’s pro-conclave meeting shouldn’t have all the fun. Some large screen displaying the chimney of the Sistine Chapel along with perhaps EWTN’s coverage would be nice. Or maybe a screen with a stream of MSM coverage to laugh at waiting for a “crows ear” moment. Of course praying for the Cardinal-electors and the new pope would be an integral part of ClaveCon.
It would be fun to be surrounded by a group of faithful Catholics when it became time to shout “Habemus Papum!”. What fun when the proto-deacon of the College of Cardinals first says the first name of the new pope and you try to guess the last name based on it. Maybe a pope name pool with minor prizes with the entry fee being of course paid using PayPal (punningly appropriate).
Fun idea, but logistically not possible. We don’t exactly get much ramp up time or ability to plan ahead regarding papal elections and getting a convention center. Still the perfect religious order to arrange this would be Conventual Franciscan Friars.