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There is no public "short list" for who will succeed Cardinal Francis George at the helm of the Chicago Archdiocese, and the process appears to be in the early stages. But here are some possible candidates cited by experts:
Milwaukee Archbishop Jerome Listecki
A retired lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve, Listecki didn't hesitate to criticize Rep. Nancy Pelosi for her interpretation of church teaching on abortion and blast the University of Notre Dame for awarding an honorary doctorate to President Barack Obama. In 2011, the Milwaukee archdiocese filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, citing the financial toll of settling sexual abuse claims. If called to Chicago, he or Gregory would be the first archbishop to return after serving as a local priest. (Though George is a Chicago native, he served in a religious order.) "It would probably be a little on the difficult side," Schreiter said. "You could start leading the church you knew 20 years ago rather than the church now."
Portland, Ore., Archbishop Alexander King Sample
George had been Portland's archbishop for only nine months when he got the call to Chicago. Sample has been there just over a year. But like George, Sample is considered a shooting star. Not only is he among the youngest American archbishops at age 53 (some have dubbed him the "Baby Bishop"), he wasn't ordained until he turned 30, earning an engineering degree before deciding to pursue the priesthood. If longevity is the goal, Sample could be the best bet.