I am, of course, not Roman, so my thoughts and wishes for the next pope are largely irrelevant. I thought about becoming RCC when I first came back from overseas, but alas I never was seduced by the dark side of Aquinas. I will share this story some later time.
MSNBC , believe it or not, has an interesting bio readout of the frontrunners for next pope.
Here are some of my initial thoughts on who will be the next big pappa.
Firstly, I am fairly certain the next pope will be old. Rumors I hear from my RCC friends is that the Cardinals do not want to run the risk of another 20 to 30 year papacy where the man becomes bigger than the office or even the church.
Secondly, with the way JP II stacked the college of cardinals with neo-conservatives, you can rule out any liberal or persons with non-conventional doctrine. I think that rules out most of the Europeans and liberals.
Thirdly, I think the winds are telling us that it would be unlikely that the papacy will revert to an Italian, unless a decision cannot be easily made. I think an Italian will be pope only as a fall back position.
Fourthly, though I think Arinze is a leading candidate, and it would so completely rock to have a black Pope, I think he is in fact too conservative and a trifle young. I think if in fact it is a non-italian, it will likely come from Latin America. My frontrunners would be: I think Ortega from Cuba has a good shot. Possibly Hummes the ArchBishop of Sao Paulo. I think if it does revert to the Italians, I think Cardinal Tettamanzi of Genoa would be a good choice. He's very John XXIII-like in personality but conservative and has good Vatican experience.