Canon 332 of the Church’s Code of Canon Law states: “The Roman Pontiff obtains full and supreme power in the Church by his acceptance of legitimate election together with episcopal consecration. Therefore, a person elected to the supreme pontificate who is marked with episcopal character obtains this power from the moment of acceptance. If the person elected lacks episcopal character, however, he is to be ordained a bishop immediately.”

Now, in consideration that Canon 1024 states: “A baptized male alone receives sacred ordination validly,” it is concluded that one only needs to be a baptized male in order to be elected pope. Even married men, as much as that might seem as fantasy to some, could be elected pope! Many bishops in the early Church had been married first, however they would cease to live in the conjugal state. That would not annul or dissolve one’s marriage, however.

Michael R. Heinlein is editor of Simply Catholic. Follow him on Twitter @HeinleinMichael.