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ello my name is keifel and i`m a recovering Catholic.

ever since they prematurely announced that John Paul II had died, i`ve pondering who they`re going to select as the next pope. JP II was elected when i was eight and was sort of a defining moment in my career as a Catholic. i had just started preparing for my first communion and his ordination was my biggest religious experience at the time. of course, i got older and more cynical and disenchanted with the Catholic church, but the politics of it will never cease to fascinate me.

i firmly believe that he was dead on Friday and the extra day was just to give the cardinals enough time to figure out whole the candidates are going to be. there is an electoral college type vote for the next pope and somewhat like the electoral college the greatest populations are under represented. the old school and massively declining European Catholics have the largest block of votes, while the Central, South America and Africa with the largest populations of Catholics have the smallest number of votes.

i have no idea where i managed to pick up the information but i managed to pick the four front runners for the papacy, spot on. although in light of the long reign of the second non-Italian pope, i don`t think the hierarchy are quite ready for a black pope, but it may be in their best interest to go `brown`. if only to ensure they don`t ostracise the only growing Catholic populations. whoever they pick, there probably aren`t going to be any radical changes to church policy anytime in the near future.