World News‎ > ‎

Cardinals Peter Turkson And Marc Ouellet Among Frontrunners To Succeed Pope Benedict

posted 11 Feb 2013, 06:09 by Sam Mbale   [ updated 11 Feb 2013, 06:49 ]

Cardinals Peter Turkson from Ghana and Marc Ouellet from Canada are two of the candidates who might replace Pope Benedict who has announced his intended resignation at the end of the month.

VATICAN  (POOL) -  With Pope Benedict's announcement on Monday (February 11) that he will resign later this month, the time may be coming for the Roman Catholic Church to elect its first non-European leader.

Peter Turkson from Ghana is the top African candidate. Head of the Vatican justice and peace bureau, the 64 year-old Turkson is spokesman for the Church's social conscience and backs world financial reform. He showed a video criticising Muslims at a recent Vatican synod, raising doubts about how he sees Islam.

Marc Ouellet from Canada is effectively the Vatican's top staff director as head of the Congregation for Bishops. He once said becoming pope "would be a nightmare." Though well connected within the Curia, the widespread secularism of his nativeQuebec could work against him.

After the Pole John Paul and German-born Benedict, the post once reserved for Italians is now open to all. Who gets the nod depends on the profile of the new pope that the cardinals who elect him at the next conclave think will guide the Church best.