A number of questions have come up repeatedly, so we’re answering them here.
Q) Isn’t this Sacrilegious?
A) We hope no one takes it that way. The creators of Fantasy Pope have long been fascinated by the politics, history, and mechanics of selecting a new Pope. The creators and participants include representatives of diverse religions (and lack thereof), including baptized, confirmed Roman Catholics. We hope everyone takes this as good-natured fun and gets people thinking about one of the most important positions in the world.
Q) What are the limitations on candidates?
A) None! The Church places some limitations on who can be Pope, but they aren’t that strict. While it’s hard to imagine the next Pope will come from other than the curia, the Church has provisions for making a lay person Pope, should one be elected. In any case, we aren’t here to enforce rules for the Church or anyone else. If you want to put your mom on your list, have at it!
Q) What if an Antipope establishes himself in Avignon?
A) It has happened before, and as scholars of Church history, we would certainly be fascinated by schism or other shenanigans. In any case, we will honor only the Pope elected by the Roman Catholic Church and who is crowned Pope in the Vatican. If anyone would like to develop Fantasy Antipope, feel free, and count on us to participate!
Q) Is there a list of papal candidates and papal names from which to choose?