Petrus Romanus- American Pope?

Nick Squires

What are the prospects of an American being elected pope when 115 cardinals from around the world solemnly enter the frescoed splendor of the Vatican’s Sistine Chapel on Tuesday to begin the voting process known as the conclave?

Until recently, the received wisdom was that the Roman Catholic Church would never accept a pontiff from the world’s only superpower on the grounds that the United States already had quite enough temporal power.

There has also been concern that having an American pope could give the impression that the Vatican had embraced a pro-Washington bias, hindering the Catholic Church’s efforts to engage in tangled international issues such as the Israel-Palestinian conflict, the spread of militant Islam and poverty alleviation.

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