ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A local parish priest and close friend of St. Louis native Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York says he would have mixed emotions if the popular prelate would be named the next Pope.

Father John Johnson at St. James the Greater parish in the Dogtown neighborhood has been a friend of Cardinal Dolan’s for decades, having attended his ordination as a priest back in 1976.

“He’s never had, as far as I know, any desire to climb, to grow in importance in the Church. He just really is interested in people,” Johnson said.

In fact, Father Johnson says there is one word you just don’t bring up with Cardinal Dolan, he calls it the “p” word: Pope.

“If it happens, I have mixed emotions because I’ll see even less of him than I do now and I’m sure his family will see less of him too. He is very loyal to his friends so, as much as I think it would be a blessing for the Church, I also would hate to see him go because I’d like to keep him as my friend.”


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