Monday, April 18, 2005
No pope today.
I'm so glad that CNN has its cameras trained on that smokestack at the Vatican to let me know the instant that the Cardinals have or have not made a decision. It would be a shame to miss that first whiff of smoke as it rises from the chimney.
Seriously, though, I find it curious that the two leading contenders are both 78 years old. Pope John Paul II was a spritely 58 when he was tapped for the job back in 1978, but now they are dismissing the chances of some cardinals who are 60 and 63 because they are supposedly too young.
John Paul II was 84 when he died and the last years of his life were plagued with health woes that made it difficult for him to carry out even the simplest ceremonial tasks. Unless the Vatican wants to go through this process again in just a few years they might want to consider some younger folks.