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A new analysis of Catholic population shifts raises questions about the upcoming papal election.

9 Comments

  1. It does not matter where the new Pope is from. Of course the next Pope doesn’t have to be from Europe, so why should he be from Brazil or Latin America? The anointed Pope could be from the most secular nation on the face of the Earth, regardless. It is irrational to say that the Pope should be from Latin America or Nigeria because they are the strongest Catholic regions in the world. The Pope is a single person who rules the Church and all Catholics of the world, in one place, the Vatican, AND the demographics of their country of origin should be indiscriminate.

    You never know, 100 years from now Latin America could be more secular than Europe from some event that changed history. You never know the future so do not say that the Pope “should” be from region X because region Y in 20 years could be more Catholic than there, while the Pope is still ruling.

    • It is not “irrational” to say that a Pope may come from an area of strongly commited and/or growing number of Catholics. It could happen!
      Mostly, the papacy goes to someone who has led an exemplary life of accomplishment in a particular field. Electing John Paul II was a very bold move since he came out from behind the Iron Curtain; he had faced down Communism and had also been an indispensible contributor at Vatican II.
      Pope Benedict was accomplished as an intellectual in the world of academia but also was a major force at Vatican II.
      The next pope will likely hardly even remember those Church-quaking days but will certainly be fully acquainted with what occurred and what has evolved from it. His diocese is probably very faithful and active; there is a seminary that is at capacity, any scandal was handled quickly and judiciously, and he has impeccable intellectual credentials. There are precious few of these bishops, so we can narrow it down.

  2. No problem .. It is God who decides who should be next pope. He should be capable to lead church through many difficulties.

    I am an Asian. I am happy to see that God choosed our continent to take human incarnation. Jesus was an Asian. All apostles and prophets are from Asia. Holy Virgin Mary was an Asian. It is in the soil of Asia, Jesus shed his blood for the salvation of entire humanity. It is in this continent Holy land is situated.

    As God gave all these blessings to us , I am not bothered from where next pope is.

  3. The trouble is that if we go by numbers, we will miss the Spirit. People must, above all, be free to seek Spirit themselves. Another factor is that the selection of a leader from the Third World would only be a gesture to win or solidify more “souls” in areas where study, learning, and thinking are more absent from Faith because of sad illiteracy. Let’s work on improved education in all areas of learning, in all areas of geography. Eliminate poverty that is a huge component of the illiteracy, and then the people can be serious, respected seekers of their own faith instead of continuing to be herded under the old and awful symbol of shepherd and sheep. Sheep are rather dumb animals, you know.

  4. Now that the pope is of age, The quation is thah Who becomes the nest pope? Only God in heven can tell but let the real thin be done like what hapen in the last pope election. The church is one n it should be one. Our God will giv us a pope of the people who will cary Gods children to his kindom. Let put all our prayer to him our God.

  5. It is God who make pope as leader of the chuech n not the people it may com from anywere becouse the church is one but i pray that at this perioud of lent God wil make is pope 4 us n God has the last answer 4 we all dis i pray as a person. Akuba christian (jnr.).

  1. […] Religion News Service: Catholic migration, and why the next pope should be Brazilian In the days since Pope Benedict XVI announced his resignation, talk has turned toward who the next pope should be, and where he should be from. Like most previous popes, Benedict hails from Europe. But as he often lamented, the church there suffers through a steady decline. Meanwhile, Catholicism is booming in Africa and predominates in Latin America. A Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life study of the global Catholic populace brings the church’s southern migration into high relief. […]

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