Mercoledì, 17 Ottobre 2018
ROME

'Papabili' punditry peaks on conclave eve

English
© ANSA

(by Denis Greenan).
Rome, March 11 - The Catholic Church will elect a
new leader for its 1.2 billion members, after the shock
abdication of Benedict XVI, later this week.
Many Vatican watchers think the odds favour a
conservative continuity candidate, since all the cardinals were
appointed by Benedict or his predecessor John Paul II, both
doctrinal stalwarts and, in their differing ways - the shy and
sometimes awkward German, the charismatic, globe-trotting Pole -
staunch traditionalists.
But others say the scandal-hit Church needs a change,
possibly a youthful injection of outsider energy to curb
reported infighting and intrigue at the Curia, the Church's
currently divided and reportedly dysfunctional nerve centre.
A younger, feistier pope might also bring back
disenchanted Europeans to the fold after waves of sex scandals
and fight off the surge of more charismatic Churches like
Evangelicalism in Africa and Asia, and Pentecostalism in South
America.
Some observers have said the time is ripe for the advent
of a black pope.
With the taboo on having a pope from a superpower now
defunct, US cardinals Timothy Dolan and Sean Patrick O'Malley
have come to the fore in recent betting, both seen as offering
enough of the old and the new.
An online poll, on the other hand, saw charismatic young
media-savvy Filipino Luis Tagle emerge on top, as young
Catholics voted for a blast of fresh air.
But the race has narrowed to two other runners, Italian
media say: Italy's Angelo Scola and Brazil's Odilo Scherer .
Scola is seen as a safe pair of hands with the right dose of
theological and administrative nous, personal charisma, ability
to appeal to the masses and capacity to achieve reform without
trauma. He is said to have more support outside the Curia.
Scherer, on the other hand, is said to have strong Curial
backing. He is also viewed as a bridge between doctrinal
tradition and modernization.

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