Habemus Papam (soon)

St Peter's BasilicaReuters today cited Christopher Bellitto, a Church historian at Kean University in New Jersey, who said that by citing health reasons for his decision, Benedict has also helped the Church by setting a modern precedent for resigning at a time when medical progress means the elderly can live far beyond their active years. Whilst the rules for election of a new Pope are continually under review, according to Morris West (Shoes of a Fisherman) nomination and election can also take place by acclamation. But one doesn’t have to be in the Conclave to be appointed to the triple crown. The precedent is set by Pope Fabian, who  was in Rome (236) immediately after the death of the forty day Pope Anterus. Whilst the names of several illustrious and noble persons were being considered, a dove suddenly descended upon the head of Fabian, who was not, at that time, being considered as a candidate. To the assembled brethren the sight recalled the Gospel scene of the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Saviour, and so, divinely inspired, as it were, they chose Fabian with joyous unanimity and placed him in the Chair of Peter. Little is known of Fabian’s pontificate but during his reign of fourteen years there was a lull in the storm of persecutions.
Now I’m wondering that if I went to Rome and sprinkled bird seed on my head, could I organise a valid nomination to the ultimate job?
On the other hand it might be better to focus on the county election in May.

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