One of the more entertaining aspects of a papal election is speculation not only about whom the Cardinal Electors will choose, but what the new Pope’s name will be.
Entertaining, yes, but there is a serious side to it. John Paul I – the Pope people forget to remember – chose his name to honor his two predecessors. John Paul II to honor his three predecessors and to take up that baton that was so quickly dropped. Benedict XVI’s choice hearkens to Holy Church’s liturgical prayer and an era when Western Civilization was tottering.
The next Pope might select a name that is meaningful.
For example, imagine a man chosen as Vicar of Christ looking around the world and wondering, with Christ, whether there will still be any faith in the world when Christ returns. Such a man, taking up Benedict’s vision for a Year of Faith, in the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council might pick the name “Paul VII” after the Apostle to the Gentiles.
Another man might want to send a message to the Jesuits and take “Clement XV”. Perhaps he will be deeply interesting in the Church’s “social teaching” and therefore choose “Leo XIV”. It may be that there is some period in the Church’s history which he sees as relevant for today and will pick the name of a Pope such as “Sylvester” to underscore religious freedom in the centenary of the Edict of Milan.
Perhaps he will choose his own baptismal name?
Perhaps he will surprise us with something new?
Here is a poll for you. You can make ONE choices. (I tried to get it to work with more choices… no joy.)
I suspect that Pope Lando II isn’t going to be on the top of many lists, so I axed his name along with Miltiades, Hormisdas, Conon, Deusdedit, Hiliarius – for obvious reasons – and a few others. Five choices should help us winnow out less likely candidates.
Along the way I may start axing some names that don’t garner votes. Right now the poll is set to expire at 8 pm Rome time on 28 February, at which point we could continue with a second phase with just the top candidates. Haven’t decided how to do that yet.
So, pick ONE and give reasons in the combox. You don’t have to be registered to vote, but you must be to comment.
NB: When you vote you might get a message that the votes can’t be tabulated. You might need to refresh. I sure hope this doesn’t kill my server or db!
What name will the next Pope choose?
- Pius XIII (24%, 1,201 Votes)
- ???? the First (14%, 694 Votes)
- Gregory XVII (11%, 552 Votes)
- Benedict XVII (8%, 422 Votes)
- Paul VII (8%, 403 Votes)
- John Paul III (5%, 272 Votes)
- John XXIV (5%, 232 Votes)
- Clement XV (4%, 184 Votes)
- Stephen XI (3%, 176 Votes)
- Urban IX (2%, 102 Votes)
- Nicholas VI (2%, 89 Votes)
- Innocent XIV (2%, 88 Votes)
- Boniface IX (2%, 86 Votes)
- Sixtus VI (2%, 78 Votes)
- Paschal III (1%, 60 Votes)
- Martin VI (1%, 59 Votes)
- Alexander IX (1%, 55 Votes)
- Adrian VII (1%, 35 Votes)
- Anastasius V (1%, 32 Votes)
- Eugene V (1%, 32 Votes)
- Theodore III (1%, 32 Votes)
- Victor IV (1%, 29 Votes)
- Julius IV (1%, 27 Votes)
- Sylvester IV (0%, 25 Votes)
- Marcellus III (0%, 22 Votes)
- Lucius IV (0%, 19 Votes)
- Sergius V (0%, 17 Votes)
- Callistus IV (0%, 16 Votes)
- Honorius V (0%, 12 Votes)
Total Voters: 5,051
In the meantime: