The most promising Pope candidates part VI: Timothy Dolan

Cardinal Dolan: The Humorous

New York’s  Archbishop Timothy Dolan is a conservative with lots of humor. He could become the first American Pope. The U.S. magazine “Time” named him one of the “100 Most Influential People in the World.”

“I can not remember a single moment when I did not want to be a priest,” Dolan once said. The 63-year-old is the Archbishop of New York since 2009, became chairman of the U.S. Bishops’ Conference in 2010, and was appointed Cardinal in 2012. Of all American Cardinals he is said to have the best chance of becoming the next Pope.


In the view of the Vatican, the strongly-built, down-to-earth and dynamic Bishop of Irish descent, seemed to be the right man to jump-start the religious life of the “Big Apple” with its more than 2.5 million Catholics in 2009. Because of the special status of New York as a trendsetting, media and commercial capital, John Paul II. once named the New York Archbishop as the “Bishop of the capital of the world”. Among the  Bishops, Dolan is considered a moderate conservative. His humor and his enthusiasm impressed the Vatican, which often lacks both. The Cardinals are however sceptical about a Pope from a “superpower”, also for some his pally appearance might be too “American”.

Struggle with Obama

Born in 1950 as the eldest of five children of an aircraft mechanic in St. Louis, Dolan studied also in Rome, labored as chaplain and college professor, before starting to work at the Vatican Embassy in Washington in 1987. In U.S. domestic politics he started repeatedly an argument with President Barack Obama, whom he accused of a gradual restriction of religious freedom.

As Archbishop of Milwaukee (since 2002), Dolan stopped the liberal course of his predecessor. The conservative railed against gay marriage and abortion. At the end of February, Dolan stood up for the previous Archbishop of Los Angeles, Cardinal Roger Mahony, charged in a sexual abuse scandal. Mahony should take part in the Conclave, the New York Archbishop insisted.

With more than 82,000 followers, Dolan is considered the “Twitter-star” among the Cardinals. Dolan usually tweets several times a day, including Bible verses and his opinion on the U.S. gun laws. His sermons (videos) are available for download on the website of the Archdiocese of New York. Asked whether also Jesus had humor, Dolan said: “Sure. He chose me a priest! ”

The most promising Pope candidates part I: Peter Turkson
The most promising Pope candidates part II: Oscar Andres Rodriguez Maradiaga
The most promising Pope candidates part III: Angelo Scola
The most promising Pope candidates part IV: Tarcisio Bertone
The most promising Pope candidates part V: Marc Ouellet
The most promising Pope candidates part VII:Luis Antonio Tagle
The most promising Pope candidates part VIII: Angelo Bagnasco
The most promising Pope candidates part IX: Gianfranco Ravasi
The most promising Pope candidates part X: Odilo Pedro Scherer

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