Millions upon millions of Catholics worldwide are keeping an eye on the Papal Conclave, as the College of Cardinals votes on the Church's next leader.

And I'd be willing to bet even non-Catholics are paying attention.

As a lifelong Lutheran, I'm one of those. The new Pope will have influence on the way the rest of the world regards not only his church, but Christianity in general.

This is not one of those (as Jimmy Buffett sang) "jump right up and show your age" moments, but I do remember when Pope John XXIII was chosen, as well as those who followed. And if a 12-year-old South Dakota farm kid was aware then, so are others now.

That's why we're watching, and we'll see what happens from there.