February 17, 2013
In this photo taken on Saturday, Jan. 26, 2013, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, archbishop of New York, takes part in the recessional for Stan Musial during his funeral at the Cathedral Basilica in St. Louis. Prevailing modern wisdom has been that an American — or a citizen of any superpower — could not be elected pope. Many Vatican watchers still think that's true, but others say that Dolan, a Ballwin native, may represent the first real prospect of an American pontificate. (Post-Dispatch/AP)
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Conventional wisdom holds that no one from the United States could be elected pope, that the superpower has more than enough worldly influence without an American in the seat of St. Peter.