Tag Archives: pope
The Pope is visiting Glasgow, and is engulfed by a crowd of folk – Young and old.
One wee Glesca bauchle, in his late teens, manages to work his way through the throng, and tugs at the Holy Father’s sleeve.
“Frankie boy” he says, “ony chance ye could help wi’ ma hearing?”
The Pope says “of course, my son” and puts his hands on the lad’s ears and prays, removes his hands and says, “How is your hearing now? ”
The wee ned says, “A dinnae ken; it’s no til next Wednesday.”y
VATICAN CITY—Hurrying outside after hearing a disturbingly loud thud against the side of the church, Pope Francis was reportedly left to clean up the remains of a dead angel Monday that flew straight into one of the Sistine Chapel’s windows. “It’s really sad; it seems like one of these guys crashes into a window at least once a week,” said the pontiff, who appeared visibly distressed while sweeping up the feathers scattered around the angel’s lifeless body. “Most of the time, their necks break and they die instantly, but once in a while they’re still twitching a bit. That’s when I find it’s best to put them out of their misery with a shovel.” At press time, the Bishop of Rome was attempting to scrape off an angel splattered on the windshield of the Popemobile.
theguardian.com, Wednesday 26 November 2014 11.03 GMT
Pope Francis’s speech at the council of Europe, where he described the continent as ‘a grandmother, no longer fertile and vibrant’
The love-in with Pope Francis is over; or at least it is as far as this Catholic feminist is concerned. On Tuesday he addressed the European parliament in Strasbourg, 27 years after a speech there by his predecessor John Paul II. That was an historic occasion, and this week’s speech was widely touted as something similar: a groundbreaking moment for the pontiff to lay out his stall on Europe and its political direction.
First came entirely laudable entreaties: European politicians, he said, should pull together a united response to assist the boatloads of impoverished and miserable people who come in search of a new life, rather than leaving them to drown on the high seas. There should be more jobs, and better conditions for workers. Europe was failing in these respects, and he wanted it to pull its socks up.
So far, so very good indeed. But then came his massive faux pas. Speaking of the need for Europe to be invigorated, he described the continent as a “grandmother, no longer fertile and vibrant”, and went on to say it risked “slowly losing its own soul”.
Pope Francis surrounded by bishops
‘Few other world leaders are exclusively surrounded, as Pope Francis is, by men.’ Photograph: Franco Origlia/Getty Images
His phrase was so badly judged on so many levels, but perhaps most shocking of all is that none of his many advisers realised how insulting an analogy this was, and failed to persuade him to take it out of his speech. Any other world leader, surely, would have had someone in his entourage who was enough in touch with female feelings and sensibilities to realise that being negative about older women because of their lack of ability to bear children, and suggesting that they were no longer active, enthusiastic, lively and life-giving, was a complete no-no. But then again, few other world leaders are exclusively surrounded, as Pope Francis is, by men (many of them elderly, though I wouldn’t dream of suggesting that means they are people with reduced potency or lack of energy).
What makes the pope’s derogatory words about grandmothers all the more shocking is that he was apparently very close to his own grandmother, from whom he has said he learned a great deal; and also because he has been a witness to the formidable campaign mounted by the grandmothers of the disappeared in his own country, Argentina, during the dirty war.
From an internal political point of view, it is a bad misstep: all over the world, older women are the backbone of the Catholic church. They are its flower arrangers and cleaners, its priests’ housekeepers and its soup kitchen operators, its fete organisers and its catechists. They are also, if my parish is anything to go by, and I am sure it is, the majority of congregants at its masses: they are its spiritual well; its practical and operational workforce. Older women are a constituency that the pope insults at his peril, and he should have known that; and if he didn’t, there should certainly have been someone there to explain it to him.
Worst of all, of course, his negative labelling of older women suggests that underneath all the warm displays of touchy-feely understanding, behind his appealing reluctance to judge, and alongside his impressive championing of the rights of the poor, Pope Francis is not so very different from the other male-centric leaders of the Catholic church. The value that has been put on women through centuries of Catholic history, from the Virgin Mary onwards, has been one that is tied up with their ability to bear children: de-linking them from this one-dimensional view of what it is to be female is a move that is desperately needed in the Vatican. From the Pope’s tone it doesn’t sound as though he’s going to provoke any revolutions on that front, however mould-breaking he may be in other areas.
Most of all, though, his words suggest that he needs a smart woman to look over his speeches before he delivers them; and he might want to spend a bit of time listening to that smart woman’s views about the real lives of real women, particularly older ones, in the real world.
Fertility isn’t everything, Pope Francis, and grandmothers are one of the most vibrant forces on the planet, as the Catholic church should have discovered through centuries of its own history.
© 2014 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved.
this was presented to Pope Francis I
One of the best examples of how ridiculous government paperwork can be is illustrated by a recent case in Louisiana. A company president was trying to buy some land in Louisiana for a plant expansion, and he wanted to finance this new facility with a government loan.
His lawyer filled out all the necessary forms, including the abstract—tracing the title to the land back to 1803. The government reviewed his application and abstract and sent the following reply:
‘We received today your letter enclosing application for your client supported by abstract of title. We have observed, however, that you have not traced the title previous to 1803, and before final approval, it will be necessary that the title be traced previous to that year. Yours truly.’
As a result, the lawyer sent the following letter to the government:
‘Gentlemen, your letter regarding title received. I note you wish title to be claimed back further than I have done it.
‘I was unaware that any educated man failed to know that Louisiana was purchased by the United States from France in 1803. The title of the land was acquired by France by right of conquest of Spain. The land came into possession of Spain in 1492 by right of discovery by a Spanish-Portugese sailor named Christopher Columbus, who had been granted the privilege of seeking a new route to India by Queen Isabella.
‘The good queen, being a pious woman and careful about title, took the precaution of securing the blessing of the Pope of Rome upon Columbus’ voyage before she sold her jewels to help him.
‘Now the Pope, as you know, is the emissary of Jesus Christ, who is the Son of God. And God made the world. Therefore, I believe it is safe to assume that He also made that part of the United States called Louisiana, and I now hope you’re satisfied.’
POPE FRANCIS CONDEMNS RACISM AND DECLARES THAT “ALL RELIGIONS ARE TRUE” AT HISTORIC THIRD VATICAN COUNCIL
Claim: Pope Francis declared at the Third Vatican Council that “all religions are true.”
Is this article real?
Origins: On December 2013, the Diversity Chronicle blog published an article positing that at the Third Vatican Council, Pope Francis had condemned racism and declared that “all religions are true”:
For the last six months, Catholic cardinals, bishops and theologians have been deliberating in Vatican City, discussing the future of the church and redefining long-held Catholic doctrines and dogmas. The Third Vatican Council, is undoubtedly the largest and most important since the Second Vatican Council was concluded in 1962. Pope Francis convened the new council to “finally finish the work of the Second Vatican Council.” While some traditionalists and conservative reactionaries on the far right have decried these efforts, they have delighted progressives around the world.
To a chorus of thunderous applause, Pope Francis stated “because Muslims, Hindus and African Animists are also made in the very likeness and image of God, to hate them is to hate God! To reject them to is to reject God and the Gospel of Christ. Whether we worship at a church, a synagogue, a mosque or a mandir, it does not matter. Whether we call God, Jesus, Adonai, Allah or Krishna, we all worship the same God of love. This truth is self-evident to all who have love and humility in their hearts!”
Shortly afterwards links and excerpts referencing this article were being circulated via social media, with many of those who encountered the item mistaking it for a genuine news item. However, the article was just a spoof: No Third Vatican Council has been convened (the Second Vatican Council took place in the early 1960s), and the blog that published this item, the Diversity Chronicle includes a disclaimer noting that “The original content on this blog is largely satirical.”
Last updated: 22 December 2013