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Australian Cardinal George Pell: The Curia will have to lift its game

2013-09-28

Before the start of the conclave earlier this year, when asked where the next Pope would come from, Australian Cardinal George Pell ventured to guess that the most likely probability was Europe.    

But then he added:

CARD. GEORGE PELL
Archbishop of Sydney (March 6, 2013)
"We will certainly see a South American Pope in the next 50 to 100 years, perhaps many of them.”

It turns out he didn't have to wait years, but rather days, to see the the first South American pontiff. His fellow cardinals elected Pope Francis in five rounds of voting.

From the onset it was clear what Cardinal Pell expected from the next Pope, and it seems, so far, he's getting what he wanted.

CARD. GEORGE PELL
Archbishop of Sydney (March 6, 2013)
"We've got to have a Pope who is able to speak to the world, to modern communications and I think this time we're gonna have a pastoral pope who can encourage the Vatican Curia to lift their game.”

The Archbishop of Sydney will also have an important role in getting the Curia to lift their game. He was one of eight cardinals from around the world Pope Francis appointed to advise him on reform to the Church and Curia. 

Whatever decision they reach, there is one thing that can be expected from Cardinal Pell. It is best summed up in the conversation he had with the newly elected Pope Francis, soon after the conclave.

CARD. GEORGE PELL
Archbishop of Sydney (March 14, 2013)
"I promised him my complete loyalty.”

Cardinal Pell has known Pope Francis "personally” for 10 to 15 years, he said. As the leading cardinal from the South Pacific region, it's not surprising to see why he's a part of the eight member committee that will advise the Pope on the governance of the Universal Church.


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