Pope
Benedict’s elder brother, the Rev. Georg Ratzinger has given insight
into why the coveted position of Catholic Pontiff may elude Africa as
the Church begins the process of appointing a new pope. Much speculation
has focused on whether Benedict’s successor might come from Africa or
Latin America, rather than Europe, where Roman Catholic congregations
are shrinking.

The pope’s brother, the Rev. Georg
Ratzinger, speaking in Regensburg, Germany, said he expected to see a
pope chosen from outside Europe one day but not just yet.
“I’m certain a pope will come from the new continents but whether it will be now, I have my doubts,” he said.
“In
Europe, we have many very able people, and the Africans are still not
so well known and maybe do not have the experience yet.”
Among
those considered frontrunners for the role are Cardinal Angelo Scola,
archbishop of Milan; Canadian Cardinal Marc Ouellet, who heads the
Vatican’s office of bishops; Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, an Argentinian,
Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana and Cardinal Francis Arinze of Nigeria.
Whoever gets the nod, the selection of a new pontiff is expected to go smoothly.
“We’re
not going to have a problem of two competing popes. If Pope Benedict
still wanted to have influence, he wouldn’t have stepped down,” said
senior Vatican communications adviser Greg Burke. While not quite
unprecedented, Benedict’s resignation is certainly historic.
The
last pope to step down before his death was Gregory XII, who in 1415
quit to end a civil war within the church in which more than one man
claimed to be pope.

Source: news.naij.com