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Catholic World News

Cardinal Ratzinger once preferred Italian Pontiffs

April 13, 2012

As Pope Benedict XVI prepares for a quiet celebration of his 85th birthday, an Italian media outlet has unearthed an interview from 1978, in which the future Pope expressed a preference for an Italian Pontiff.

“I would not be in favor of a non-Italian Pope,” said then-Cardinal Ratzinger, just prior to the conclave that did elect an Italian prelate, Cardinal Albino Luciani, as Pope John Paul I. Just over a month later, Cardinal Ratzinger would participate in another conclave that elected the first non-Italian Pontiff in over 400 years.


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  • Posted by: Antigone - Apr. 13, 2012 9:28 PM ET USA

    Oh, brother, this is only news because the Italians are upset that they were passed over twice in a row, so now they are launching a preemptive campaign to ensure that the next pope is Italian. Could this also be why it seems there have been so many efforts to undermine this pope in the media? And meanwhile Italy is only nominally Catholic, so what makes them think they deserve an Italian papacy? I don't care where the Pope comes from, as long as he's as good as the last two we've had!