Media peers of NCR's Vatican correspondent John Allen have offered kudos for his thorough profiles on the papabili .
In a piece today, TIME magazine notes  that when journalists were scrambling for information yesterday about Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, they turned to Allen’s March 3 profile of Bergoglio  (now Pope Francis):
The fact that Allen, virtually alone, gave props in advance to the eventual pope was a vindication of his own hard-won expertise in covering one of the world’s most opaque bureaucracies. It was also marked a red-letter day for one of the most interesting, and unusual, newspapers in America ["a global powerhouse," the piece later states of NCR.]
... In recent years, no one on the staff has shed more light on dark Vatican corners than John Allen, a Catholic from the Kansas plains whose “maddening” objectivity (in the words of one religion blogger) has made him trustworthy among church leaders on both ends of the liberal-conservative spectrum.