by Anura Guruge
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The ONLY logical rationale for Pope Francis creating his four ‘IRREGULAR’ Cardinal Bishops last week was to set the groundwork for the NEXT conclave. I get that.
But, at the same time he was creating these four ‘irregulars’ he EXCEEDED the Cardinal Elector limit by 5! Ahhh?
To I, Pope Francis is like President Donald Trump. They both LOVE being what they are, but, alas, have little understanding or appreciation of the office they hold.
Pope Francis definitely seems at sea about conclave protocols.
Somebody obviously told him that you had to have at least one Cardinal Bishop at a conclave. NOT TRUE. The senior most Cardinal Patriarch or Priest would have deputized as the Dean. That is a GIVEN. That is what precedence in the College of Cardinals is all about.
So, PLEASE, let’s get this straight once and for all. You do NOT need to have any Cardinal Bishops at a conclave. Period. The rules of precedence will apply and the senior most cardinal will do the duties. I can refer you to an excellent book with all of the rules clearly spelled out. That is how I learnt all this stuff.
On the other hand, EXCEEDING the 120 limit for cardinal electors CANNOT be circumvented — per the current laws.
Barring deaths it will be July 2019 before the cardinal elector number again drops to the permissible 120.
IF a conclave was to occur while we had more than 120 electors we would be in uncharted territory.
Current laws ONLY permit 120 electors to attend.
Yes, of course, the Pope, like Trump, can take care of this, in minutes, with an ‘Executive Order’. All he has to say is that henceforth the elector limit for conclaves is 125 — or whatever number he wants. He could even remove the limit completely.
If he was savvy he would have taken care of this at the same time he created the 4 irregulars. Then everything would have been copacetic for the next conclave.
But, NO. Like Trump, Francis likes to rule by chaos.
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by Anura Guruge