02/13/2013 05:04 pm ET Updated Feb 02, 2016

Afternoon Links, Catholics And The Pope

Earlier this week, I wrote about how LGBT Catholics are hopeful -- if not optimistic -- that the next pope might be less vehemently anti-gay than Pope Benedict XVI, who this week announced to much surprise that he planned to retire.

Early reports speculating over top candidates, however, have not looked promising for LGBT Catholics. The Bilerico Project looks into one name that has floated near the top of many lists of possible successors -- Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana. "Turkson is so anti-gay that he actually defended draconian laws that criminalize homosexuality and gay sex, including Uganda's notorious "Kill the Gays" bill."

Still, many LGBT advocates in the United States have noted that while the Vatican remains as stringently opposed to gay rights as ever, Catholics outside the Church leadership are increasingly supportive of LGBT rights. In one interesting sign of this, a blogger at Pam's House Blend noted that Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn -- poised to sign marriage legislation this Thursday - will not only be the sixth Catholic governor to sign same-sex marriage legislation into law, but also, every U.S. governor who has signed such legislation has been Catholic.