Reno's Catholics Look Forward to Vote - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Reno's Catholics Look Forward to Vote

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The only clue will be puffs of smoke from the chimney. Black smoke, no pope. White smoke, success. The Bishop of Reno will be glued to the TV, "As much as I can! I have meetings and appointments. I think I'll pre-empt them if I hear there's white smoke and I'll come and watch the proceedings."

Most Reverend Randolph Calvo spent 4 years in Rome. This past April he met Pope Benedict, who he described as gracious but very frail. He wishes he could be there for the first vote, "To be a fly on the wall at the Sistine Chapel and find out what's going on? Sure."

But he believes that first vote won't be their last. Unlike past years, none of the candidates for pope are in the pole position…there's no obvious choice. Bishop Calvo says, "This one here, there is no clear candidate. So I say it's an open field for everybody." With some added excitement for local Catholics. For the first time, one of 2 Americans has a fighting chance of being the next pope. For Bishop Calvo, Reno Catholics "Would be thrilled, yes. It's like your favorite son getting elected, that kind of situation."

Whoever it is, the new pope will face a church in crisis, most notably from the sex abuse scandals that have soured many faithful on their church. Bishop Calvo told us, "I can't speak for all the Catholics in Reno, but I do think the Catholics here reading press reports of what's going on are not happy with what's happening, and wonder what is going on."

He says there's a desire among Nevada's Catholics for a new holy father to deal with those issues: "Among the Catholics here in Reno, there is a prayerfulness and anticipation and trust in the holy spirit that the one selected, can lead our church."

As for how long this could take, it's anyone's guess. Most conclaves lasted between two and four days. But with such an open field, this one could go a bit longer.

-written by John Potter

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