I, for one, am quite excited about the new Pope. It is easy to raise questions about his age - he is only 10 years younger than Ratzinger - but there are signs that there is something to like for everyone. For one, he marks the end of a long period of European dominance: it is sometimes hard to remember that half of the early Popes were from the Middle East and Africa.
How many of the world's 1.2 billion Catholics actually follow their church's teaching on matters such as contraception and abortion? How many actually believe its teaching on transubstantiation, that during Holy Communion the bread and wine offered to the congregation are miraculously changed into the body and blood of Christ?
So what does this all mean for non-Catholics? Well, probably not a lot. For most people, Pope Francis is just another old man who should really be on a golf course in Florida somewhere, enjoying retirement. And yet we all tuned into the news when the signal was given that a new pope had been elected.
Call it first day nerves, but the Pope stumbled into his new roll in near dramatic fashion. As he got off his elaborate seat after the beginning of...
It's a relief to be able to call him Joseph. And it will be a relief once he's treated just like any other Joseph. It's been said before and it will be said again: there's a Ratzinger-sized space in Rome's nearest prison cell just waiting to be filled. The former Bishop of Rome should soon become the Inmate of Rome.