April 19, 2005

On Benedict XVI

MABB is a registered TM.

Well, it looks like we have a new Pope. Our, that is for Catholics, new Pope will be Benedict XVI. The German Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who chose the name of Benedict XVI was chosen by the conclave to be the next leader of the Catholic Church.

According to various press releases and at least one book, I read, Ratzinger is the conservative of the conservatives within the church. That is something that does not worry me too much, because what Ratzinger would have to say, would have very little effect on my secular life. Fortunately, he won't have much influence on governments where the separation of church and state is important.

Nevertheless, I have an opinion on the conclave's choice itself. There were 115 electors. They had the opportunity of making history and perhaps, in the process, gain more believers, had they chosen a cardinal from one of the numerous developing nations represented within.

As is to be expected, I would have liked to see a first Latin American Pope. That would mark for me an age of change in the church, which would be unprecedented. But, above all, I ask myself, why choose a German Cardinal? I hope it is not because he was the oldest among the serious candidates so he would not stay in the chair long and because he was so conservative, which would mean that traditional values were going to be strengthened and the church would pursue a hard line on its believers.

I have to say, I am not happy. I think a Pope from outside Europe should have been given priority. But, that's just my opinion, right?