Historic: Pope Benedict Announces Resignation, New Egyptian Mufti Shawki Abdel-Karim Named

It’s a rather interesting symmetry of historical coincidence.

Here in the West, the Catholic church will be choosing a new spiritual leaders as Pope Benedict announces that he will be resigning at the end of this month, citing failing health.

The last pope to resign did so 600 years ago.

And in the East, a new Mufti is named to the Muslim Brotherhood led nation of Egypt.

Most observers believed that the Muslim Brotherhood would have their nominee selected to be Mufti, but Morsi chose a more moderate choice, Shawki Abdel-Karim.

From yesterday:

Egypt’s ruling Muslim Brotherhood has nominated one of its senior leaders for the influential position of grand mufti, the nation’s top cleric, defying critics who accuse the Islamist group of seeking to dominate all institutions.

The mufti is empowered to issue opinions (fatwas) on any matter, influencing legislation on social and cultural issues, public behavior and court rulings.

“Shawky”? is the professor of Islamic jurisprudence at Al-Azhar University.

So while a spiritual leader in the West falls, a spiritual leader in the East rises. Interesting times.