Anticipation Builds Among Catholics as Papal Conclave Gets Underway
Published March 11th, 2013
GAINESVILLE - The anticipation is growing among Roman Catholics, as 115 cardinals from around the world gather to cast their first votes for the next pope. While the rumor mill continues to churn about who could be chosen as the next Pope, Catholics in north central Florida certainly have their own opinions on what qualities the next pontiff should possess, with many hoping for a charismatic leader.
Speculation is growing regarding who could be selected to lead the world's one-billion Catholics. Early reports indicate a rift growing between the traditional wing of the church, which is pushing for a European pope, and the more progressive wing, which is said to be supporting candidates from outside Europe. Regardless of who is chosen, young Catholics in north central Florida say they will remain hopeful.
While there may not be a front-runner going into the conclave, bookies seem to have picked their favorite. According to the online betting site "Paddy Power", Italy's cardinal Angelo Scola seems to have the greatest chance, with 2-1 odds of becoming the next pope.
Cardinal Scola jumped ahead of the next leading candidate, Ghana's Peter Turkson, who currently has 4-1 odds. Meanwhile, New York's Cardinal Timothy Dolan is the highest ranked American, with his odds standing at 20-1.
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