Before I get the the main links, I had to include this before it reminded me of T.C.
Russian Scientists Develop Tablet to Prolong Drunkeness
So today I saw...
Pope Has Tracheotomy to Help Breathing
and then wondered who exactly is the Pope...
John Paul II
Now I needed to know what it means to be the Pope or "The Holy Father"....
THE HOLY FATHER
"The Roman Pontiff, as the successor of Peter, is the perpetual and visible principle and foundation of unity of both the bishops and of the faithful."
Now, since the current Pope doesn't appear to have much time left, how is the next Pope chosen? Apparently they use an an age old voting process performed by 2/3 majority the Bishops....
A Papal Succession Primer
Interestingly enough.... "any Roman Catholic adult male is technically papabile (i.e., able to be elected Pope), for centuries only Cardinals have been elected." A one party system. :)
Then, who are the likely candidates...
Who Will Be the Next Pope?
Lastly, looking at the average age of these guys... we might need another Pope again real soon afterwards.