SA cardinal: Next pope needs wisdom

2013-02-14 13:33
Cardinal Wilfrid Napier

Cardinal Wilfrid Napier

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Vatican City - South African Cardinal Wilfrid Fox Napier, seen as a possible successor to Pope Benedict XVI, said the Church was in a "profound crisis" and needed a new pope to implement "spiritual renewal".

The 71-year-old also predicted next month's conclave of cardinals in the Sistine Chapel would last longer than the last one which took just two days, speaking in an interview with Italian daily La Stampa published on Thursday.

"We can come out of this profound crisis with a strong spiritual renewal like the one of St Francis who implemented a moral reform," Napier said.

Napier said he would not rate candidates to succeed to Benedict based on where they came from but indicated that the "balance" in the Church had shifted to the southern hemisphere, where the majority of Catholics now live.

"The determining factor is he must have the wisdom and energy to confront the challenges that await the Church in every corner of the globe," he said.

"Church institutions should help evangelisation, not slow it down. Too often we give an impression to the outside world of confrontations and careerism rather than serving the faithful," he said.

"People and young people in particular are waiting for words of truth from the church.... On sexuality and ethics there is a strong need for sense. We need a dialogue of truth," he added.

Asked about the conclave, Napier said: "I don't think the white smoke will come so quickly this time around" - a reference to the symbolic puffs of smoke that indicate a new pope has been chosen.

Read more on:    roman catholic church  |  pope benedict xvi  |  religion

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Miley Cyrus can’t get enough of her new puppy

Miley's new dog is too adorable.



13 guilty pets
Meet SA's top poacher-catcher
The unusual pets of Instagram
Bertie sets a new world record!

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts

Plant some seeds. Your innovative mind is on fire and your ingenious ideas may just be the seeds for future projects. You may more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.