Thursday, August 25, 2016

When Did Appearances at World Youth Day and International Travel Become Essential Papal Functions?

The ruins of Walsingham Abbey

Last night I dreamed that I was wailing in front of Walsingham Abbey. I woke up abruptly and spent about an hour reading before I went back to sleep and put the whole  thing out of my mind.  It came back to me this afternoon I read  excerpts from an  interview Pope Benedict XVI gave to an Italian newspaper .  Apparently, he abdicated because he just couldn't handle the traveling anymore and knew he couldn't do  another trip to World Youth Day in particular. I don't blame him for not being able to stomach World Youth Day, the whole thing is certainly not his quiet, cerebral style but this brings up the question of why popes have to attend them. Where is the Vatican document that says the Pope must do mega Masses all over the world? Why on earth would a man as intelligent as Joseph Ratzinger think he was bound to the rock star front man of the Vatican Band?

Maybe 50 years from now this will all make sense but right now it seems like we've all fallen down the rabbit hole and landed in Wonderland with crazy queens, sleeping Doormice and sneering Cheshire cats mocking us at every turn. Lord have mercy.


Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

Down the rabbit hole is right. The pope is not rock star called to do gigs all over the planet. Maybe that is part of the planet. My mom used to say "familiarity breeds contempt." Maybe we see too much these days of gallivanting clergy. An hour of quiet in front of the Blessed Sacrament is more valuable than a lifetime of airplane press conferences.

Hans Georg Lundahl said...

Travelling is one way in which Bergoglio could merit the nickname "the cog" (which in ASCII Code is "666"). Cog can refer to a certain type of international trading ship.

Other way is of course the cogs of a cog wheel - he's Rotarian.