Susan Ross is head of the 1,400-member Catholic Theological Society of America and professor of theology at Loyola University Chicago.
Tina Beattie is professor of Catholic studies at London's University of Roehampton.
Agnes Brazal is professor of theology at the St. Vincent School of Theology in Manila, Philippines, and
Fr. Agbonkhianmeghe Orobator leads the Eastern Africa province of the Society of Jesus and is a moral theologian at Nairobi's Hekima College.
"As the world learned of the news of the election of Argentinean Jorge Mario Bergoglio as the first Pope Francis, several global theologians told NCR they hope the new pontiff will reflect the spirit of his namesake while shifting focus to the developing world and ecological issues."
Read excerpts from several of their statements, made via email: "Theologians hopeful for Pope Francis' name, outlook," by NCR staff writer Joshua J. McElwee