The Conclave to elect the 266th Pope of the Catholic church has begun
March 12, 2013 10:29 AM   Subscribe

The 115 cardinals under 80 years old, who can vote and can be voted for are now in Conclave. You can watch a Live Stream, mostly a shot of the Sistine Chapel chimney, who apparently is now on Twitter. You can get acquainted with the 2013 Papabili using Wikipedia's List of Papabili.
posted by CrazyLemonade (722 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite

 
My anticipation is papalable.
posted by Apocryphon at 10:32 AM on March 12, 2013 [41 favorites]


Related: The Gorgeous Steampunk Contraption That The Vatican Uses To Announce The Next Pope:
The device that shoots the smoke up is this awesome, Jules Verne-looking stove. All of the paper ballots along with a chemical (to produce either black or white smoke) are placed in it and burned, alerting the world where the College of Cardinals is at in the voting.
Note: there's a lot of brass and copper piping, some blackened metal furnace parts, and one shot of what looks like a computer control panel with a key. Not a superfluous gear or unnecessary lever in sight. Steampunks might not be all that impressed.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:35 AM on March 12, 2013 [5 favorites]


Those guys will poped by the time they are done.
posted by Twain Device at 10:35 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Ten bucks on the guy in the pointy hat.
posted by fight or flight at 10:36 AM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


It's a funny world where you can watch a world-wide live stream of a chimney -- the internet broadcast of the world's most-watched smoke-signal broadcast. Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose ...
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 10:36 AM on March 12, 2013 [13 favorites]


That stove is the opposite of steampunk; it's functional.
posted by 2bucksplus at 10:36 AM on March 12, 2013 [9 favorites]


The Economist's "Schumpeter" columnist on Pope, CEO
posted by chavenet at 10:37 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Blue smoke means their Harlem Shake video is complete.
posted by I'm Doing the Dishes at 10:38 AM on March 12, 2013 [32 favorites]


This whole vote for a Pope thing is quite humorous, no?
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 10:39 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


They may be named for birds, but the Cardinals may not tweet about the conclave under threat of excommunication.

I really wish they would make a good choice here and go in a more liberal direction. The organization is in desperate need of reform to catch up with modern times socially and to make the institution more open and transparent so coverups of major crimes can't happen again. I don't expect them to do this.
posted by Drinky Die at 10:39 AM on March 12, 2013


Man, they really need to fancy up that chimney a bunch. It's the centrepiece of the friggin' Vatican! At least slap some gold leaf on there or something.
posted by Sys Rq at 10:41 AM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


You can get acquainted with the 2013 Papabili

I'm picturing some weird ecclesiastical spinoff of Rockabilly: bishops with huge pompadours, mutton chop sideburns, and cuffed jeans, nuns with pigtails & half-sleeve tattoos
posted by leotrotsky at 10:43 AM on March 12, 2013 [19 favorites]


All this European fancyman-votin' is reminding me of one of my favorite mefi posts: Electing The Doge.
posted by Greg Nog at 10:44 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Meanwhile, live cams cover other gatherings of Primates...
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 10:44 AM on March 12, 2013


Pink smoke for... ah never mind.
posted by sammyo at 10:45 AM on March 12, 2013 [7 favorites]


Wow, what fun.
posted by sfts2 at 10:46 AM on March 12, 2013


Needs a sound track.
posted by kinnakeet at 10:46 AM on March 12, 2013


To whomever is working the pool, I'd like ten bucks on Cardinal Ravasi. And in the name pool, ten bucks each on Gregory and Urban.
posted by Capt. Renault at 10:46 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Sign up for the Pope Alarm to get a text when they make their choice! "When the smoke goes up, you'll know what's going down!"
posted by marxchivist at 10:46 AM on March 12, 2013


I want to see the Papabili Probabilities.
posted by kmz at 10:47 AM on March 12, 2013




My local 24 hour news channel has made room for the papal smoke cam in their already cluttered feed of talking heads, headlines, traffic cams, weather forcasts, stock ticker and sports scores.

I'm really okay with seeing the footage on tape after the fact.

But then, the only outcome I'd be happy with would involve the lot of them quitting in shame and being hauled off to jail over the epidemic of sexual abuse they've presided over. So I'm probably not the target audience.
posted by dry white toast at 10:48 AM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


Is there any reason Kanye couldn't be Pope? Before you answer, imagine the soundtrack to the inauguration.
posted by 2bucksplus at 10:48 AM on March 12, 2013 [10 favorites]


They may be named for birds, but the Cardinals may not tweet about the conclave under threat of excommunication.
"@pontifex xcomm'd by who?! yeah thats what i thought #sedevacante"
posted by Flunkie at 10:48 AM on March 12, 2013 [17 favorites]


Needs a sound track.

I had something else in mind.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 10:49 AM on March 12, 2013


All of the paper ballots along with a chemical (to produce either black or white smoke) ...

Chemical? That's the Power of Christ!
posted by DU at 10:51 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Smoke if you got 'im!
posted by Kabanos at 10:54 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I really wish they would make a good choice here and go in a more liberal direction. The organization is in desperate need of reform to catch up with modern times socially and to make the institution more open and transparent so coverups of major crimes can't happen again. I don't expect them to do this.

I think this is what most people in the Euro-American west want, but Catholicism is thriving in Africa in it's more conservative forms.
posted by zizzle at 10:55 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Ten bucks on the guy in the pointy hat.

Hey, fight or flight, didn't you hear? InTrade closed!
posted by wenestvedt at 10:56 AM on March 12, 2013


Is there any reason Kanye couldn't be Pope? Before you answer, imagine the soundtrack to the inauguration.

No. Any baptized Catholic male is eligible but they've tended to go for cardinals for last 700 odd years.
posted by Damienmce at 10:57 AM on March 12, 2013


Smoke if you got 'im!

You're never alone...with a pope.
posted by Jody Tresidder at 10:57 AM on March 12, 2013


Is there any reason Kanye couldn't be Pope? Before you answer, imagine the soundtrack to the inauguration.

Well, pussy and religion is all he needs, much like Benedict IX.

Actually, Kanye probably wouldn't sell the papacy and then take it back, so I might take him over Benedict IX.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 10:57 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


The Guardian's "Is there white smoke?" is going to occupy my second monitor until this thing gets settled (or until I need to use that screen, I guess).
posted by troika at 10:59 AM on March 12, 2013 [7 favorites]


Catholicism is thriving in Africa in it's more conservative forms.

Same thing goes for the Anglican church, and like the Anglicans the money still comes from liberal Europe and America.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 11:00 AM on March 12, 2013


I always thought papabili were those little canon-shaped pasta. Problem is, I could never find a guilt-free sauce recipe.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 11:00 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Any baptized Catholic male is eligible but they've tended to go for cardinals for last 700 odd years.

No way it's gonna be a Cardinal this time. I can't see that streak lasting.
posted by mazola at 11:00 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


...Catholicism is thriving in Africa in it's more conservative forms.

In Africa? Heck, in North America -- though as a transplant! zizzle, my family in Minnesota have a Peuvian "mission" priest who is WAAAAY more conservative than they are.

He brought with him a passel of Peruvian seminarians who stand mutely throughout Mass holding log-sized candles, and he will only wash the feet of men, not women. I have heard him say Mass several years in a row when I visit and....let's just say his views don't quite mesh well with the guitar Mass.
posted by wenestvedt at 11:01 AM on March 12, 2013


Go Jays Go!
posted by Kabanos at 11:01 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Kanye would definitely become Pope Urban X.
posted by Kabanos at 11:03 AM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


Well, pussy and religion is all he needs, much like Benedict IX.

Plus Kanye has a freaky name just like Theophylactus of Tusculum, aka Benedict IX, the youngest pope.

I know, you meant to type XVI, but I liked writing Theophylactus of Tusculum.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 11:03 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I always thought papabili were those little canon-shaped pasta.

I actually first learned the word after watching Angels and Demons on the late night movie once.

I confessed to Erstwhile Seminarian Friend that most of what I knew about papal elections, I'd learned there, and the look he gave me was WITHERING.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:03 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


It's strange how into this ritual the media is. I heard that, in the years before John Paul II died, organizations like CBS were paying to lease rooftop space in Rome so that they'd have camera shots of the puff of smoke - space they kept paying for for YEARS.
posted by thelonius at 11:03 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I heard that, in the years before John Paul II died, organizations like CBS were paying to lease rooftop space in Rome so that they'd have camera shots of the puff of smoke - space they kept paying for for YEARS.

Ah, yes. The poperazzi.
posted by It's Never Lurgi at 11:06 AM on March 12, 2013 [14 favorites]


Any baptized Catholic male is eligible
Does this mean any male who was baptized in a Catholic baptism? Or any Catholic male who was baptized in a Catholic baptism?

In case it's not clear, I'm asking because I don't know that they're the same thing: From the Catholic church's point of view, is a "Catholic" by definition someone who was baptized in a Catholic baptism? So, for example, are any/all of the following males eligible, technically speaking?
  • Baptized but never confirmed
  • Baptized but never goes to church or whatever
  • Baptized but excommunicated
  • Baptized but switched to another religion
  • Baptized but atheist
  • Baptized but publicly denounced the idea that they are Catholic
  • Baptized but believes the so-called Popes since Vatican II have actually been Antipopes, and have had themselves elected Pope, like that guy Mel Gibson's dad digs
posted by Flunkie at 11:06 AM on March 12, 2013


You can get acquainted with the 2013 Papabili

I'm picturing some weird ecclesiastical spinoff of Rockabilly: bishops with huge pompadours, mutton chop sideburns, and cuffed jeans, nuns with pigtails & half-sleeve tattoos


Wow - I think you accidentally just described my Catholic-paraphanelia-collecting, Roackbilly-loving partner's greatest party idea EVER. (Our apartment is basically decorated for it already.)

I guess they aren't going to change the smoke in the middle of the night, but I am a little disappointed there's not a spotlight.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:06 AM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


To help you get in the spirit I recommend We Have A Pope: a recent Italian film about a cardinal who is elected Pope that runs screaming from the balcony of St.Peters before he is announced to the world. A comedy that is reverent enough for believers and human enough for the rest of us. And I guarantee it is the only film you will see with an all-Cardinal volleyball tournament.
posted by munchingzombie at 11:07 AM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


If I were the cardinals, I'd make sure to hash the whole thing out on the first vote, then kick back and relax for a few days with some fine wines, sending out a black puff once every 24 hours. It could be a free holiday! I mean, imagine. You and your fellow Conclavers could just spend a week pissed, staring in slack-jawed wonder at the Sistine ceiling, and arsing about like Kevin Spacey in that episode of House of Cards where he goes back to open the library at his old military college, then send out a white puff next Tuesday, job done, and none of us lot would be any the wiser.
posted by Len at 11:07 AM on March 12, 2013 [6 favorites]


So which network is getting color commentary by The Pope Formerly Known As Benedict XVI?
posted by mazola at 11:08 AM on March 12, 2013


Kabanos: "Kanye would definitely become Pope Urban X."

Pope Urbane X
posted by chavenet at 11:08 AM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


No way it's gonna be a Cardinal this time. I can't see that streak lasting.
Let me get this straight...
posted by Flunkie at 11:09 AM on March 12, 2013


Munching Zombie, something really weird happened with your link; here's a better link to the wiki page for We Have A Pope.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:09 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


They may be named for birds...

It's my understanding the birds were named for the guys in the red cassocks. Before Europeans saw them they were just pretty red grosbeaks.
posted by TedW at 11:10 AM on March 12, 2013 [9 favorites]


Flunkie: "Does this mean any male who was baptized in a Catholic baptism? Or any Catholic male who was baptized in a Catholic baptism?"

Seconding this question. My Catholic grandmother was upset that my parents weren't planning on baptizing me, so she did it herself in the kitchen sink.

Am I eligible to be Pope?
posted by brundlefly at 11:10 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


This probably completely merits its own post, but the New York Daily News is reporting that the Vatican owns the building that houses one of Europe's biggest gay bathhouses. And yep, Cardinal Dias owns a 12-room apartment on the second floor, right above it. Pay close attention to the shrubbery.
posted by phaedon at 11:10 AM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


The organization is in desperate need of reform to catch up with modern times socially...

They are going to need a time machine and an Greek scribe at the very least.
posted by DU at 11:11 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


All of the paper ballots along with a chemical (to produce either black or white smoke) ...

Chemical? That's the Power of Christ!


According to a reporter on the CBC last night, the system is a lot less holy, binary or science-y than you would think. The last time around, people had a tough time deciding whether they were seeing white or black smoke, so they were saved by the bell:
But as history has shown, relying on the burning of ballots to communicate with the world sometimes puts the men in the red hats in a gray area.

There has been white smoke that looked dark and black smoke that wasn't dark enough and plenty of other technical problems that seem to clash with the meticulous ritual that accompanies the election of a pontiff.

"Even with all this planning, they still can't get it right," said Christopher Bellitto, a professor of history at Kean University in New Jersey who has written books on Catholicism.

The public assumption is that the Vatican must use smoke signals because that's what has been done since the time of Peter. Not so, said Frederic Baumgartner, author of "Behind Locked Doors: A History of the Papal Elections."

For centuries, bells or cannons were used to spread the news. It wasn't until the 1800s that the faithful gathered in the piazza every day began to look to the chimney for an indication that a vote had taken place; the first election where the cardinals used two different types of smoke to announce the outcome didn't happen until 1903, Baumgartner said.
posted by maudlin at 11:11 AM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


CrazyLemonade: "The 115 cardinals under 80 years old"

I think there are 209 cardinals. Right now ~45% of the cardinals are 80+. One is 98. In the next year, 10 more will turn 80, which will put 80+ year olds at the 50% mark.
posted by boo_radley at 11:11 AM on March 12, 2013


You can get acquainted with the 2013 Papabili

I'm picturing some weird ecclesiastical spinoff of Rockabilly: bishops with huge pompadours, mutton chop sideburns, and cuffed jeans, nuns with pigtails & half-sleeve tattoos.


Ladies and gentlemen put your hands together for... Father Antoniu "Don Elvis" Petrescu!
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 11:13 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Popehard With a Vengeance"
posted by mmrtnt at 11:14 AM on March 12, 2013


I want Dolan solely because I'm going to NY for St.Patrick's Day and it could only add to the craic.
posted by Damienmce at 11:14 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


If I were the cardinals, I'd make sure to hash the whole thing out on the first vote, then kick back and relax for a few days with some fine wines, sending out a black puff once every 24 hours. It could be a free holiday! I mean, imagine. You and your fellow Conclavers could just spend a week pissed, staring in slack-jawed wonder at the Sistine ceiling, and arsing about like Kevin Spacey in that episode of House of Cards where he goes back to open the library at his old military college, then send out a white puff next Tuesday, job done, and none of us lot would be any the wiser.

What evidence is there to suggest that they don't already do this with their time?!?
posted by dry white toast at 11:15 AM on March 12, 2013


Personally, I hope they go with the Canadian. He'd be the first Pope with a toque instead of a mitre. He'd say introibo ad altare Dei, eh? He'd have Wayne Gretzky canonized in a second.

I have more where those came from.
posted by Cash4Lead at 11:16 AM on March 12, 2013 [13 favorites]


I want Dolan solely because I'm going to NY for St.Patrick's Day and it could only add to the craic.

Two dissents:

1. The American Catholic Church is generally considered to be the uncontrollable black sheep of Catholicism as it is, and there is vanishingly little chance any American would be named Pope for a really long time; and

2. Speaking as a New Yorker, for the love of God no it's bad enough here as it is.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:16 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


POPE! POPE! POPE! POPE! WOOO #1!
posted by Theta States at 11:17 AM on March 12, 2013


I want Scola. Only because then we can make endless Popesi Scola jokes and gifs.
posted by humanfont at 11:17 AM on March 12, 2013 [8 favorites]


Many years ago, I was confirmed by this guy, who was one of the frontrunners during both Conclaves in 1978. My confirmation was in 1979 and it was a big deal that we got a cardinal - well all of our parents were excited; not many of us kids really cared.

I believe he slapped both me and my brother during the ceremony. Way better than kissing the ring.
posted by jaimystery at 11:17 AM on March 12, 2013


115 Angry Men.
posted by mazola at 11:17 AM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


Halcyon for Pope!
posted by jeffburdges at 11:18 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Flunkie: "Does this mean any male who was baptized in a Catholic baptism? Or any Catholic male who was baptized in a Catholic baptism?"

Any trinitarian baptism "counts," so anyone baptized by in an Orthodox church or MOST Protestant churches would "count" as baptized for Catholic purposes. And while they do say "any baptized Catholic" it would, in practicality, mean any practicing Catholic in reasonably good standing.

Excommunicated LITERALLY means "out of communion (with Rome)," or someone who isn't receiving the Eucharist in a congregation that is in communion with the bishop of Rome, whether by choice or by fiat -- so anyone who has renounced Catholicism, joined a different church or religion, quit going to Mass, committed certain grave sins and not repented them, or been officially excommunicated is technically "excommunicated," though the term is mostly used to refer to people who are officially excommunicated. Someone who was excommunicant could not be Pope because they couldn't perform the churchy duties of the office. I suppose if you elected someone who was excommunicant, for argument's sake, and made him Pope under all the rules, that'd excommunicate most everyone else who wasn't in communion with HIM (because definitionally you've got to be in communion with the bishop of Rome) and refused to come into communion with him.

So your first hypothetical, probably yes, but he'd probably have to get confirmed and take Orders before they installed him as Pope; the rest of them, like theoretically they could be eligible under certain circumstances, I suppose? I mean definitely we could come up with some excellent plot points with all those things happening. But in the real world, not really options. (Well, in the real world, it's cardinals of a certain age who are eligible.)
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:18 AM on March 12, 2013 [5 favorites]


If I were the cardinals, I'd make sure to hash the whole thing out on the first vote, then kick back and relax for a few days with some fine wines, sending out a black puff once every 24 hours. It could be a free holiday! I mean, imagine. You and your fellow Conclavers could just spend a week pissed, staring in slack-jawed wonder at the Sistine ceiling, and arsing about like Kevin Spacey in that episode of House of Cards where he goes back to open the library at his old military college, then send out a white puff next Tuesday, job done, and none of us lot would be any the wiser.
"Conclave" is just a fancy-schmancy way of saying "lock-in", so you might be onto something here.
posted by Jehan at 11:18 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I have to say, I'm loving these shots of the Vatican at night (on the live stream). St. Peter's is so beautiful.
posted by Elly Vortex at 11:18 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


> And in the name pool, ten bucks each on Gregory and Urban.

While you'd probably win, I personally hope he goes Pope Classic: Telesphorus, Hyginus, or Zephyrinus would be equally acceptable.
posted by languagehat at 11:18 AM on March 12, 2013 [6 favorites]


I think there are 209 cardinals. Right now ~45% of the cardinals are 80+. One is 98. In the next year, 10 more will turn 80, which will put 80+ year olds at the 50% mark.

There are 117 Cardinals under the age of 80 that can vote in the Conclave, minus two who did not attend. There are also 90 living cardinals who can't vote/be voted for because they are over 80.
posted by CrazyLemonade at 11:19 AM on March 12, 2013


"Does this mean any male who was baptized in a Catholic baptism? Or any Catholic male who was baptized in a Catholic baptism?"

I can speak to this, a little bit, as I converted to Catholicism as an adult.

If you're baptized in the RC church, you're Catholic. IIFC, you're not be able to receive the Eucharist until you're confirmed, however, which usually happens in your teen years. I forgot the details here - but you are Catholic.

If you're an adult (or teen) who wants to convert to Catholicism, here's what happens:

1. If you're not baptised at all, they prepare you in a yearlong series of classes, to get baptised, and then confirmed.

2. If you were baptised, but not in the Catholic church, they need a record of that, to determine whether you only need to get confirmed, or re-baptised. They recognize most denominations, IIRC - but I had to try to track down the Congregational church in Wauwatosa, WI, and then make them go through the records to find it. But they did, they made a copy of it, and mailed it to me. The RC church accepted that, and I only had to go through Confirmation.
posted by spinifex23 at 11:20 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Ladies and gentlemen put your hands together for... Father Antoniu "Don Elvis" Petrescu!

"Gratias vobis ago, gratias multas."
posted by Strange Interlude at 11:20 AM on March 12, 2013 [15 favorites]


Well, pussy and religion is all he needs, much like Benedict IX.

A common mistake, you are confusing him with Mrs Slocombe.
posted by biffa at 11:20 AM on March 12, 2013 [12 favorites]


IIFC, you're not be able to receive the Eucharist until you're confirmed, however, which usually happens in your teen years. I forgot the details here

Actually, many people have their "First Communion" as kids (around 8 years old) and their Confirmation in teen years. The exact date for Confirmation has been moved around quite a bit, at least in my lifetime, so it's not definite, I think.
posted by CrazyLemonade at 11:23 AM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


Out of the list of possible candidates, are there any that seem particularly likely? Is there any way to handicap them?
posted by zarq at 11:24 AM on March 12, 2013


How about Pope Antonin Scalia? Get him off the bench... sure to cause a lot of hoopla?
posted by edgeways at 11:24 AM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


They recognize most denominations, IIRC

I believe they recognize any denomination that uses the trinitarian formula (I baptize you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit) except the Mormons because the Mormons don't accept the Nicene conception of the trinity, so their use of the formula is considered invalid.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 11:24 AM on March 12, 2013


Eighth grade, roughly, for confirmation. I myself was confirmed by Daniel Pilarczyk the year our late, beloved, Cardinal Bernardin went up to Chicago. I tell my husband the disappointment in that missed opportunity is more or less equivalent to the chagrin he feels at having Rick Scott's signature on his diploma.
posted by toodleydoodley at 11:27 AM on March 12, 2013


a shot of the Sistine Chapel chimney,

A bunch of old guys lighting a fire in the Sistine Chapel sounds like a really bad idea. That is one building you don't want to burn down.
posted by R. Mutt at 11:27 AM on March 12, 2013


zarq: Out of the list of possible candidates, are there any that seem particularly likely? Is there any way to handicap them?

Pope Odds.
posted by Rock Steady at 11:29 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]




He brought with him a passel of Peruvian seminarians who stand mutely throughout Mass holding log-sized candles

Shit, I can't make anything up funnier than that.
posted by telstar at 11:29 AM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


How about Pope Antonin Scalia? Get him off the bench... sure to cause a lot of hoopla?

Now this is a great idea. Moves both institutions leftward!
posted by DU at 11:30 AM on March 12, 2013 [18 favorites]


Candidate cheat sheet.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:30 AM on March 12, 2013


For the record I don't think the Catholic Church is in an enviable position. Their base is increasingly in Africa/Latin America which is more conservative on gender/sexuality issues. But a lot of their money still comes from Euro/N.America, which is shedding active Catholics and those that are still there are, on balance, more liberal. So, they have to thread a needle. Keep the money flowing and appeal to their shifting demographics, while trying to hold onto who they have in the N. Hemisphere.

Even a conservative Pope who was black would cause some moral quandaries, even amongst conservative Americans.

My guess, more of the same, kick the can down the road and we'll have another Mid-European white conservative dude.

but, who knows? Can't even check out Intrade nowadays as it's shut down
posted by edgeways at 11:31 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


TV Espanol the local Spanish-lang TV-guide had a big headline this past week: "THE NEW POPE SHOULD BE LATIN-AMERICAN". Good idea, shift the blame to the brown people.
posted by telstar at 11:32 AM on March 12, 2013


Thanks for the corrections all. Clearly, I missed out on this bit of fun. But I remember my classmates grousing about it, and me getting all sorts of jealous. They're church had SAINTS! and MARY! And FIRE! My church? Uhm, I guess we had a really ripping coffee hour, but that was all I remember about the Congregationalists.
posted by spinifex23 at 11:33 AM on March 12, 2013


from the Pope Odds link:

Richard Dawkins (UK) 666:1
posted by edgeways at 11:34 AM on March 12, 2013 [14 favorites]


In the future, the digital pope selection process will be illustrated by a popegress bar.
posted by davemee at 11:35 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I don't care who they pick as the next Pope, just as long as the name he chooses for himself is Pope John Paul George Ringo I.
posted by The World Famous at 11:38 AM on March 12, 2013 [13 favorites]


Can't even check out Intrade nowadays as it's shut down

Forget Intrade, let's ask Nate Silver what he thinks.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:38 AM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


As to the question of what would happen if a non-cardinal was named pope, the governing document here is Universi Dominici Gregis. Relevant text:
88. After his acceptance, the person elected, if he has already received episcopal ordination, is immediately Bishop of the Church of Rome, true Pope and Head of the College of Bishops. He thus acquires and can exercise full and supreme power over the universal Church.

If the person elected is not already a Bishop, he shall immediately be ordained Bishop.
By implication, a person not already ordained would take holy orders, and then get the bishopric.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:40 AM on March 12, 2013


zarq: "Out of the list of possible candidates, are there any that seem particularly likely? Is there any way to handicap them?"

Here's a collection of odds from various bookmakers.

Then you want to read a good analysis of the different candidates; I think Scola is the most likely. Bertone is unpopular with non-curial cardinals who have the power to block him and blame him for the Church's catastrophic PR situation. People who think it'll be Turkson or Dolan are dreaming. I think Ouellet's a possibility (but only because he's a native French speaker; a native English speaking North American as Pope is just not REMOTELY a possibility). I'm not sure any of the Italians other than Scola can command enough of a block of voters (the reason there's not a clear Italian frontrunner is that the Italian cardinals are split among several candidates), and I feel like I don't know enough about the Latin American candidates to judge their odds. I think Schoenborn has gotten short shrift from oddsmakers but I think the Cardinals will find him too liberal so it doesn't really matter.

There are several dynamics going on at once -- a theologian (Benedict XVI) or a pastor (JPII)? Someone from the curial bureaucracy or from a bishop's post? (that's something like the dynamic in presidential runs between a long-time congressman or a state governor) A manager to crack down on the curia (desperately needed) or a leader to handle the pressing PR issues and inspire the flock (who can theoretically bring in good managers)? The issues the cardinals are looking at are not just the pedophilia scandal and sexual politics (abortion, birth control, homosexuality), but western economic and cultural hegemony (and generally its undesirability, for most non-European and non-North-American cardinals), global economic issues, the massive quantities of criminal money laundering going on through the Vatican and its catastrophic mismanagement, the total unmanagability of the Vatican bureaucracy, liturgical innovation or regression (and in particular a lot of STRONG OPINIONS about the English translations), the stagnation of Christianity in Europe and North American but its explosive growth in the "global south," and lots of baggage about specific people, nations, and regions.

A Pope has to be a manager, a pastor, a theologian, a world leader, a politician, and a moral bastion. I think anyone elected is bound to be a disappointment, frankly; it's too big a job, especially with the curia out of control.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:41 AM on March 12, 2013 [23 favorites]


Aaaaand there's the black smoke. They're done voting for the day.
posted by CrazyLemonade at 11:42 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Uh oh, black smoke from the Vatican Chimney.

Someone call John Locke! Is that a polar bear?
posted by Elly Vortex at 11:42 AM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


So much for a slam dunk.
posted by spinifex23 at 11:42 AM on March 12, 2013


ooooohhhh smoke in the first 5 mins of watching...but black
posted by OHenryPacey at 11:43 AM on March 12, 2013


You and your fellow Conclavers could just spend a week pissed, staring in slack-jawed wonder at the Sistine ceiling, and arsing about like Kevin Spacey in that episode of House of Cards

Cardinal Frank: “I was so drawn to you.”
Cardinal Tim: “I could always make you laugh.”
posted by Kabanos at 11:43 AM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


Richard Dawkins (UK) 666:1
It would be worth taking that bet for the stub alone. Neat thing to have hanging on the wall.

On the name front, I would put Gregory as rather high. It's a good name for a strong reformer, assuming they will want to portray themselves as one.
posted by Jehan at 11:44 AM on March 12, 2013


My guess, more of the same, kick the can down the road and we'll have another Mid-European white conservative dude.

On the whole, these are old, conservative men. As such, they're not apt to go for change. An African or South American Pope, while suitably (if not especially) conservative, may be too much change, particularly in an institution which has a very long view of time, and prides itself in its resilience to public pressures. To guess at their thinking, that kind of change offered by a non-European Pope will come eventually in the fullness of time, when God-through-the-Church decides, and not before.

Of course, there are many problems facing the Church, but of particular concern to these old, conservative men is the loss of their former standing in Europe and North America. They want to regain these flocks back. By voting for a European -- and in particular, an Italian -- that nicely coincides with their own personal aspirations.
posted by Capt. Renault at 11:47 AM on March 12, 2013


spinifex23: "So much for a slam dunk."

Even a slam dunk takes at least three ballots, usually, because the Cardinals do some obligation nominating of and voting for their buddies and people they want to recognize, but who aren't real papabile. There's traditionally some regional voting bloc activity too. Then they start to coalesce after a couple of ballots around a frontrunner, if there's a clear one. I would expect this election to take 6 to 12 ballots, since there's no clear frontrunner and some strongly opposed blocks. If they go past 4 days or so, I think they'll just pick someone old so they can all go home and try again in a couple years after some candidate turnover.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:48 AM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


"An African or South American Pope, while suitably (if not especially) conservative,"

The African papabile are typically MUCH MORE conservative than the European papabile.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:50 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Richard Dawkins (UK) 666:1

It's a natural selection.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:52 AM on March 12, 2013 [6 favorites]


Sylvia Poggioli said on NPR this mornign that Cardinal Odilo Pedro Scherer appeared to be a leading candidate for those in the Curia and Cardinal Angelo Scola of Milan appeared to have the backing of some outside of the Curia, including certain U.S. cardinals. She also mentioned Cardinal Peter Erdo of Hungary and Cardinal Christoph Schoenborn of Austria.

I wish we could have information on the voting. I love this type of election (I get to see it during local political conventions.) It is interesting to see how voters start to peal away from the marginal candidates once the stronger candidates emerge.
posted by Area Man at 11:53 AM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I heard they're going to decide this year via an all priests five-a-side over 75 football tournament.
posted by drezdn at 11:54 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


"I think they'll just pick someone old so they can all go home and try again in a couple years after some candidate turnover."

I don't mean this to sound quite so dismissive as it sounds, since the Cardinals mostly approach this in an attitude of prayerful seriousness and take it quite seriously as a religious obligation and seek the Holy Spirit's guidance and inspiration. But it is also political activity and I'm analyzing the political aspect. I don't mean to minimize the religious aspects or sound as if they're unimportant, or as if the men engaged in the election are being hypocrites. I think most of them are doing their best and believe deeply in what they're doing and treating this as a sacred and serious obligation. I don't want to belittle that.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:54 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


We are all POPES! Fnord!
posted by jeffburdges at 11:58 AM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


A NEW POPE
posted by jeffburdges at 12:00 PM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


House of Cards you say?
posted by Apocryphon at 12:03 PM on March 12, 2013 [6 favorites]


I wish they'd hurry up. Who am I supposed to take orders from in the meantime?
posted by jonmc at 12:03 PM on March 12, 2013


It was amusing listening a report on CBC radio that featured interviews with shopowners in the Vatican - the people who run gift shops.

They hoped the next pope comes from someplace besides Europe, because pilgrims from other parts of the world typically spend more money on Papal Kitsch.
posted by KokuRyu at 12:03 PM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


I hope whatever happens they're all going for drinks 'n' dips afterwards in their huge gay sauna.
posted by fight or flight at 12:03 PM on March 12, 2013


Seconding this question. My Catholic grandmother was upset that my parents weren't planning on baptizing me, so she did it herself in the kitchen sink.

Am I eligible to be Pope?


This sort of scenario was dealt with in the follow up to one of my favorite late antique heresies: Donatism

To sum up, the Donatists were heretics pretty much just because they refused to accept the validity of baptisms, ordinations, and other sacraments performed by a group of bishops who had denied their faith rather than be martyred. After the inevitable lengthy discussions about what constitutes a validly administered sacrament, the official Roman Catholic position became that a sacrament is valid as long as it is performed correctly and it is intended to be a real sacrament (i.e. it's not a joke or a prank or something). So as long as your grandmother really believed she was giving a valid baptism, yes, it counts and you are theoretically eligible.

Sadly, most of the rest of my knowledge of late antique heresies involves fights about the substance and nature of Christ's body and soul and doesn't come up nearly as often as valid sacraments (but does involve fun words like Monothelite and heteroousianism).
posted by Copronymus at 12:05 PM on March 12, 2013 [5 favorites]


Black smoke. No pope yet.

So am I to understand that the black smoke is the conclave version of "your call is important to us. Please remain on the line"?
posted by dry white toast at 12:07 PM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


Any trinitarian baptism "counts," so anyone baptized by in an Orthodox church or MOST Protestant churches would "count" as baptized for Catholic purposes. And while they do say "any baptized Catholic" it would, in practicality, mean any practicing Catholic in reasonably good standing.

Wait, I, an Anglican, could be Pope tonight? I AM WAITING NOW BY THE PHONE IN BREATHLESS EXCITEMENT!
posted by alasdair at 12:07 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Warm up the Sedes Stercoraria!
posted by peagood at 12:10 PM on March 12, 2013


If you're looking for a screen full of old dudes who might yet become pope, The Guardian has a thing where you can pick any of the cardinals and, I dunno, look at their biography and stuff. Sadly this is a field where my usual tactic of backing the one with the goofiest name is completely useless.
posted by Copronymus at 12:10 PM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


I wish they'd hurry up.

Whatever you do, don't write to the conclave and tell them to hurry up. You never know how they may respond.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:13 PM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


Arianism is the best antique heresy.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:14 PM on March 12, 2013


Black smoke at night / No Pope tonight
White in the morn / Sinners be Warned
posted by mazola at 12:14 PM on March 12, 2013 [13 favorites]


Red smoke = Ragnarok
posted by mattbucher at 12:17 PM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


alasdair: "Wait, I, an Anglican, could be Pope tonight?"

As an Anglican, you are by definition not a Catholic in good standing with the church.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:18 PM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]




If the Catholic church wants to regain relevance in the modern world, they're going to have to get Simon Cowell to run the conclave — think "The ΧΡ Factor" (or "The ☧ Factor", if your font can display the chi-rho glyph), or maybe "Roman Idol".

Randy: Dude. Duuude, I love what you've got going on with your chasuble. And your thurible work is top class, just killer. But dog, I got some doubts 'bout you infallibility. Seriously. Dog.

Paula: Wow. Wow. You're a beautiful, beautiful Prince of the Church. And I love love love your Latin.

Simon: Sorry, luv, I can see you've got something there, but you just don't have the Holy Spirit that we're looking for in a Pope.

Audience: Boo, booooh!

Simon: No, really, c'mon. You know I'm right.

Paula: Simon! Remember, brotherly love!

Randy: You just kissed your kiss of peace good-bye, dog.

Simon: No matter. Let's put our ballots in our braziers for final votes. One white smoke, two black smoke. Sorry, cardinal. Maybe go work on your Italian and try again in a few years. Next!
posted by benito.strauss at 12:20 PM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


Arianism is the best antique heresy.

I'm partial to Bogomilism.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 12:21 PM on March 12, 2013


Plus Kanye has a freaky name just like Theophylactus of Tusculum, aka Benedict IX, the youngest pope.

Hey, don't be like that! Theophylactus is a perfectly good name! When I was growing up, 2-3 kids in every class were named Theophylactus! It was kind of like Justin or Dylan.
posted by GenjiandProust at 12:21 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Rock Steady: " Pope Odds."

Thanks!
posted by zarq at 12:22 PM on March 12, 2013


Black smoke = no new pope.

Black water = keep on rolling.

Black Flag = we're gonna have a TV party tonight.

(saw it on twitter, had the urge to share)
posted by mephron at 12:22 PM on March 12, 2013 [9 favorites]


True story, Theophylactus is that Cosby kid's real name.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:22 PM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


You guys got it wrong. They haven't even voted yet, they were just letting you know that they were ready to start watching a movie.
posted by WinnipegDragon at 12:23 PM on March 12, 2013


I suppose if you elected someone who was excommunicant, for argument's sake, and made him Pope under all the rules, that'd excommunicate most everyone else who wasn't in communion with HIM (because definitionally you've got to be in communion with the bishop of Rome) and refused to come into communion with him.

And then all the newly excommunicated Catholics would form a new church. They could call it the No Homers Club.
posted by Cash4Lead at 12:23 PM on March 12, 2013


Sys Rq: "Man, they really need to fancy up that chimney a bunch. It's the centrepiece of the friggin' Vatican!"
They only put it up when there's a conclave so it seems a bit wasteful (even for the Vatican) to pimp the chimney.
posted by brokkr at 12:27 PM on March 12, 2013


CPGrey's How to Become Pope.
posted by K.P. at 12:28 PM on March 12, 2013


Hunh. My name is not on the list. Obvious oversight.
posted by Joey Michaels at 12:30 PM on March 12, 2013


It's a little later than your classical antique heresies, but I'm a big fan of monethelitism because it's such a genius move. We've got these two religious groups who hate each other for doctrinal reasons, but if we just make up some kind of crazy middle ground between the two, that'll make everyone happy. Everyone knows religious zealots love compromise!
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 12:38 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Arianism is the best antique heresy.

Hey, if a guy called Grimwald tells you to deny the full divinity of Christ, you deny the full divinity of Christ.
posted by Copronymus at 12:38 PM on March 12, 2013


Black smoke? I guess they're too pooped to pope.
posted by Foosnark at 12:41 PM on March 12, 2013


...it's not like it's a popeularity contest.
posted by Foosnark at 12:42 PM on March 12, 2013


CPGrey's How to Become Pope.

There are enough problems in this one to make me really question the accuracy of the rest of his videos! For example: Anglican priests who convert to Roman Catholicism can keep their wives and a bishop gets a diocese, not a cathedral, that would go to a dean or provost
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 12:44 PM on March 12, 2013


Gibbon was at his snarky best about the dispute over Christ's nature: "[T]he profane of every age have derided the furious contests which the difference of a single diphthong excited between the Homoousians and the Homoiousians."
posted by Chrysostom at 12:47 PM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


There are enough problems in this one to make me really question the accuracy of the rest of his videos! For example: Anglican priests who convert to Roman Catholicism can keep their wives and a bishop gets a diocese, not a cathedral, that would go to a dean or provost

The first nit (Anglican priests keeping their wives) is a pretty minor technicality. And I think if you want to become Pope, becoming an Anglican priest first is a really bad move. The second is wrong. The "cathedra" or "seat" from which the word "Cathedral" comes is the seat of the Bishop (or archbishop).
posted by yoink at 12:53 PM on March 12, 2013


Copronymus's Guardian link is fun. Why is it phrased "created a cardinal?"
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 1:01 PM on March 12, 2013


The first nit (Anglican priests keeping their wives) is a pretty minor technicality.

It's part of Cannon Law. Just because quartering of troops is not a very commonly cited constitutional right doesn't make it a technicality.

The second is wrong. The "cathedra" or "seat" from which the word "Cathedral" comes is the seat of the Bishop (or archbishop).

The official seat is housed in the Cathedral, but most churches will have a cathedra. The Cathedral itself is governed as a parish by a Dean or Provost. The Bishop's domain is not the cathedral , but the diocese. A diocese need not actually even have a cathedral.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 1:06 PM on March 12, 2013


I'm hoping the next Pope is named Hadrian VII
posted by chavenet at 1:07 PM on March 12, 2013


chavenet: I'm hoping for Sixtus VI. How have we only had five Sixti?
posted by troika at 1:08 PM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


My money is on one of the Brazilians and named John Paul III. Going after the youts of the world is a good gamble. I almost went with the Philipino, but at 55 he is too young.
posted by Gungho at 1:13 PM on March 12, 2013


How about alternatives to that stodgy old "conclave" term?

I like "Popodrome", although it is hard to do better than "Popomat".
posted by sebastienbailard at 1:14 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Bishop's domain is not the cathedral , but the diocese.

You're looking for some really thin edge cases to sustain this point. Here is the Catholic Encyclopedia on the subject:
[Cathedral]: The chief church of a diocese, in which the bishop has his throne (cathedra) and close to which is his residence; it is, properly speaking, the bishop's church, wherein he presides, teaches, and conducts worship for the whole Christian community.
Also
Hence the juridical character or standing of the cathedral does not depend on the form, dimensions, or magnificence of the edifice, since, without undergoing any change a church may become a cathedral, especially when a new diocese is founded. What properly constitutes a cathedral is its assignment by competent authority as the residence of the bishop in his hierarchical capacity, and the principal church of a diocese is naturally best adapted to this purpose. Such official designation is known as canonical erection and necessarily accompanies the formation of a new diocese.
posted by yoink at 1:15 PM on March 12, 2013


most churches will have a cathedra

This, by the way, seems a very odd claim. I've never heard of a cathedra being installed in any church other than a cathedral.
posted by yoink at 1:18 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Thanks for the response, Copronymus!
posted by brundlefly at 1:19 PM on March 12, 2013


Pope with a toque

This I can get behind. In nomine poutine.
posted by arcticseal at 1:22 PM on March 12, 2013 [5 favorites]


Be among the first to Know.
posted by Danf at 1:24 PM on March 12, 2013


Len: "You and your fellow Conclavers could just spend a week pissed, staring in slack-jawed wonder at the Sistine ceiling, and arsing about like Kevin Spacey in that episode of House of Cards where he goes back to open the library at his old military college"

House of Cardinals.
posted by schmod at 1:30 PM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Watching that chimney is still better than anything on CBS.
posted by Mister_A at 1:42 PM on March 12, 2013


I vote for Bono. Anything to get U2 put out of its misery.

True, he's not RC but neither was Jesus.
posted by philip-random at 1:46 PM on March 12, 2013


Also, Pope John Paul Jones would be a hell of a cool moniker.
posted by philip-random at 1:47 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I know it'll probably be another Peter or Gregory but by gum what could possibly be better than another Pope Hilarius?
posted by saturday_morning at 1:50 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Has it ever been white smoke on the first day? Conclave? whatever it is. /not catholic
posted by yoga at 2:00 PM on March 12, 2013


Has it ever been white smoke on the first day?

Not in the past 200 years, from a comment on the blog Rorate Caeli by "Inquisitor":
Here is a list of all of the Papal conclaves in the last two hundred years along with their days of duration and for most of them the number of ballots cast.

2005 (Apr 18-19) (2 days) After 4 ballots
1978 (Oct 14-16) (3 days) 8 ballots
1978 (Aug 25-26) (2 days) 4 ballots
1963 (Jun 19-21)(3 days) 6 ballots
1958 (Oct 25-28)(4 days) 11 ballots
1939 (Mar 1-2)(2 days) 3 ballots
1922 (Feb 2-6 1922)(5 days) 14 ballots
1914 (Aug 31-Sep 3) (4 days) 10 ballots
1903 (Jul 31-Aug 4)(5 days) 7 ballots
1878 (Feb 18-20) (3 days) 3 ballots
1846 (Jun 14-16) (3 days) 4 ballots
1830-31 (Dec 14-Feb 2)(50 days) 83 ballots
1829
1823 (Sep 2-28)(26 days)
1799-1800 (Nov 30, 1799- Mar 14, 1800) (105 days)

As you can see the historical average of papal conclaves in the past 200 years is about 2-3 days. In the 19th century papal elections could be quite drawn out owing to the political climate of the time and certain obsolete elements such as the Holy Roman/Austrian Emperor using their veto power against the election of one of the few available compromise candidates. The veto power of secular leaders was abolished by St. pope Pius X after his election in the 1903 conclave.
posted by Jahaza at 2:04 PM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


As an atheist, I haven't got a dog in the fight, but as someone who lives outside Boston, I'm pulling for Cardinal O'Malley. He really does seem like the best man for the job -- kindly, genuine, self-sacrificing, just. None of them have progressive opinions, of course, but he has been the least odious, especially as regards the abuse scandals.

Plus, can you imagine the mood around here if a Boston Irish pope is elected right before St. Patrick's Day? It'd be like the Pats won the Super Bowl. The local media is already giving us articles like this most every day. Maybe he could make an official papal visit to ride down the Charles on a Duck Boat.
posted by Countess Elena at 2:08 PM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


You do have to love the papal conclave in the era of Photoshop; the cardinals with "I voted" stickers is very funny.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 2:14 PM on March 12, 2013 [3 favorites]


In the Episcopal church, many churches do have a special Bishop's chair for when the Bishop visits. So, sort of a cathedra.
posted by Biblio at 2:15 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Vatacan's own news website on how the black and white smoke is made:
Beginning with the Conclave in 2005, in order to better distinguish the colour of the “fumate” (smoke signalling the election or non-election of a pontiff), a secondary apparatus is used to generate the smoke in addition to the traditional stove in which the Cardinal electors' ballots are burned. This device stands next to the ballot-burning stove and has a compartment where, according to the results of the vote, different coloured-smoke generating compounds can be mixed. The result is requested by means of an electronic control panel and lasts for several minutes while the ballots are burning in the other stove.

For a black “fumata” the chemical compound is made of potassium perchlorate, anthracene, and sulphur. The white “fumata” is a mixture of potassium chlorate, lactose, and rosin. The rosin is a natural amber resin obtained from conifers. Prior to 2005 the black smoke was obtained by using smoke black or pitch and the white smoke by using wet straw.

The stove-pipes of the stove and the smoke-producing device join up and exit the roof of the Sistine Chapel as one pipe leading to the chimney installed on the ridge of the roof, which is visible from St. Peter's Square. To improve the airflow the pipe is pre-heated by electrical resistance and it also has a backup fan.
And now you know why there are two furnace-looking things in the not-so-steampunky contraption, and why there's a control panel on the boxier looking structure.
posted by filthy light thief at 2:28 PM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


Personally, I hope they go with the Canadian. He'd be the first Pope with a toque instead of a mitre. He'd say introibo ad altare Dei, eh? He'd have Wayne Gretzky canonized in a second.

He's Québécois. He'd be all ostie this and tabarnak that, which, frankly, he probably would be anyway, on account of it's his job and everything.

Maybe he'd make it so that Christ transfigures into bagels and Molson Export, though.
posted by Sys Rq at 2:41 PM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


Also, Pope John Paul Jones would be a hell of a cool moniker.

Saint Bonzo has a nice ring to it.
posted by The World Famous at 3:29 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Does this mean any male who was baptized in a Catholic baptism? Or any Catholic male who was baptized in a Catholic baptism?"

No. You have to have been baptized, of "the age of reason" -- that is, he must be able to understand what he is accepting and be able to accept the election, not married, not in schism with the church, not a heretic, and not noted for simony

In particular, if you are excommunicate and you need the pope to lift that, you cannot become pope. Why?

You have to be able to accept the full sacrament of holy orders -- that is, be ordained as a bishop, in order to become the pope. If a layman were elected and accepted, he would be ordained first as a deacon, then as a priest, then as a bishop, then finally would be acclaimed as the supreme pontiff. Deacons and Priests would receive the holy orders they did not hold. This is also why you have to be male, because the Roman Catholic Church insists that only males can accept holy orders.

If you are excommunicate, you are separated from the sacraments, and thus, you cannot be ordained. Arguably, this would also prevent anyone under the age of 35 who is not already a bishop from becoming pope, because you need the pope to grant dispensation to ordain as bishop someone that young, and there is no pope to grant that in conclave.

So, there's much more to the theoretical eligibility than "baptized catholic and male" because the real qualification is that you have to be able to become a bishop to become pope. Anything barring that bars that person from becoming pope.
posted by eriko at 3:33 PM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


While we're all waiting, how's about some Lee Scratch Perry to pass the time?
posted by punilux at 3:37 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I wish they'd hurry up. Who am I supposed to take orders from in the meantime?

jonmc, drink beer, listen to Blue Öyster Cult and sin in moderation. There you go.
posted by ersatz at 3:39 PM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Time for a game of Black Smoke, the papal conclave RPG scenario!
posted by Zed at 3:54 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Browsing through the list of popes, I see it has been 1200 years since a pope with a name that no pope had had before*: Pope Lando, I assume surnamed Calrissian. I think it's high time for them to stop it with the retreads already and get a little creative. Pope Zeppo! Pope Englebert! Pope Thor! Pope Kato! Pope Wonderful Terrific! Pope Dwayne Elizondo Mountain Dew! Pope James Tiberius! Pope Pope!

*: (except John Paul, of course, but I consider that cheating.)
posted by Flunkie at 4:24 PM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


Time to find out what Your Pope Name is: The last word of your college motto + the number of times you've been arrested.

I'm going to latinize and increase the count to the number of times stopped by police and become Pope Liberabit II. Or do I go with our popular corruption of the motto and be Pope Pedicabo II?

(h/t Cat and Girl.)
posted by benito.strauss at 4:28 PM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Pope Humanitas II (I'm using speedng tickets)

Graduates of St. Olaf College would be Pope Krossmenn, so that's cool (the college's moto is in Old Norse, not Latin.)
posted by Area Man at 4:54 PM on March 12, 2013


Pope Aliter V

(Had to latinize 'differently')
posted by edgeways at 4:58 PM on March 12, 2013


Graduates of St. Olaf College would be Pope Krossmenn, so that's cool (the college's moto is in Old Norse, not Latin.)

Yeah, but every graduate of St. Olaf that I know is actually Lutheran, so that's a wee problem. I'm sure there are a few Bishop-eligible Catholic alums of St. Olaf, but that's not their traditional student pool.
posted by ambrosia at 5:10 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


My anticipation is papalable.

Myself, I'm not much of an enthusiast for all this papal bull.
posted by anothermug at 5:19 PM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


But wait I was taught at Church camp by the following song :

I am an Anglican
I am CE
I am Protestant, Catholic and Free
Not a Presbyterian
Nor a Lutheran
Nor a Babtist white with foam
I am an Anglican
Just one step from Rome
I am an an Anglican
Via Media my home


Are you telling me everything I learned at Church camp was a lie?
posted by humanfont at 5:19 PM on March 12, 2013


La la laaaa, just a reminder that it's insane that 51% of the world's population is automatically censured from being the spiritual leader of 1.2 billion people...
posted by lauranesson at 5:35 PM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


jonmc, drink beer, listen to Blue Öyster Cult and sin in moderation. There you go.

*cracks MGD, disregards reaper*
posted by jonmc at 5:36 PM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


Here's something interesting I noticed while researching in a book about nineteenth-century Newburyport, Mass. This was back in 1878, in the days of open Yankee anti-Catholic sentiment. The local paper's editorial page, in reference to the upcoming election of a Pope to replace Pius IX, said: "The more reactionary the result of the election, the better for the cause of progress and civilization. There is nothing better for the right and the truth than the baldest and boldest advocacy of the wrong and the false."

It struck me that I have seen this very same opinion pronounced on the current papal election. I have also seen it for years in the context of American elections. Personally, I remain dubious.
posted by Countess Elena at 5:52 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


While you wait for the voting to start up again in the morning, you can peruse a Conclave Worst-Dressed List.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 6:23 PM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


All Hail Pope Lux II!
posted by Rock Steady at 6:44 PM on March 12, 2013


Watching that chimney is still better than anything on CBS.

The Good Wife
is a really entertaining show.
posted by Drinky Die at 6:47 PM on March 12, 2013


you can peruse a Conclave Worst-Dressed List.

Great premise. Abysmal execution.
posted by Jahaza at 6:48 PM on March 12, 2013


Pope Deall II. I'm feeling lucky.
posted by arcticseal at 6:54 PM on March 12, 2013


Are you telling me everything I learned at Church camp was a lie?

The stuff the church taught you was a lie. The stuff you learned at camp in spite of their best efforts to keep it from you was all true.
posted by The World Famous at 7:17 PM on March 12, 2013


Browsing through the list of popes, I see it has been 1200 years since a pope with a name that no pope had had before*: Pope Lando, I assume surnamed Calrissian.

Google "Pope Lando." You'll be pleased with the results.
posted by Cash4Lead at 7:31 PM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


yoga: "Has it ever been white smoke on the first day? Conclave? whatever it is. /not catholic"

It's a lot harder than it used to be, since they eliminated selection by acclamation.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:58 PM on March 12, 2013


These Premises Are Alarmed: "Copronymus's Guardian link is fun. Why is it phrased "created a cardinal?""

Because that's the terminology for being bestowed a noble title (as opposed to inheriting it). Technically, the title-Duke of York, for example-is CREATED by the sovereign, since power flows from him. If you didn't inherit the title, it didn't exist until then-either it is a brand new title, or one that previously became extinct when there were no inheritors of it.

There are obvious differences, but church rank and titles work in basically the same fashion.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:07 PM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


While you wait for the voting to start up again in the morning, you can peruse a Conclave Worst-Dressed List.

Someone on my facebook feed has recently expressed a fondness for this guy, simply because of how he's dressed:
Every other cardinal is dressed, you know, like a cardinal - red and white. Not Cardinal Cleemis. Oh no. Cardinal Cleemis is wearing a full black velvet gold embroidered robe with a hood, as befits the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church. So the line looks like this: Cardinal, Cardinal, Cardinal, Cardinal, Cardinal, Cardinal, Dumbledore, Cardinal, Cardinal, Cardinal....
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:24 PM on March 12, 2013 [12 favorites]


I can add nothing to the constant cacophony about the conclave, other than my comments on the last conclave.
posted by charlie don't surf at 8:25 PM on March 12, 2013


Pope Scrire I.

Too bad about the lady business, it's a badass name.
posted by sonika at 8:27 PM on March 12, 2013


Remember that terror alert dancing banana? I need a pope alert dancing banana that turns white when the new pope is chosen.
posted by freejinn at 8:53 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


EmpressCallipygos: "Someone on my facebook feed has recently expressed a fondness for this guy, simply because of how he's dressed: Every other cardinal is dressed, you know, like a cardinal - red and white. Not Cardinal Cleemis. Oh no. Cardinal Cleemis is wearing a full black velvet gold embroidered robe with a hood, as befits the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church."

There are at least a couple of other cardinals who could dress that way because they're Eastern patriarchs (I'm not sure how many are under 80, but I can think of at least 2 others off the top of my head ... also, I have just realized the top of my head is FULL OF LAME TRIVIA* -- anyway, George Alencherry (Syro-Malabar), Antonios Naguib (Coptic), maybe Bechara Boutros-Rai who is Maronite but I'm not sure about their vestments), but in the pictures it looks like he's the only one who is wearing his Eastern regalia, so ROCK ON HIM.

Also I love this picture of the nun embroidering while waiting to see the smoke. And speaking of embroidery the lace insertions on the cardinals' sleeves are pretty (if you look, the insertions on every cardinal's rochet are different; each one would have been made individually by skilled tailors/seamstresses). While we're on clothing, here are dudes in suits, dudes in lace, and dudes in various Renaissance military uniforms. And here is a barefoot guy in literal sackcloth with excited journalists taking pictures.

*Do not get me started on the Eastern Catholic Churches, it is pretty much my favorite topic in the world and my trivia store about it is pretty much endless.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:14 PM on March 12, 2013 [10 favorites]


Time to find out what Your Pope Name is: The last word of your college motto + the number of times you've been arrested.

BOW BEFORE POPE NIHILUM THE ZEROETH.

(Yep, really. My university didn't have a motto, and the law hasn't laid a finger on me so far.)
posted by Strange Interlude at 9:15 PM on March 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


Photo of the US Cardinals hanging out on the bus.

Last one tonight I promise but that may be my favorite photo ever in the history of the world because, srsly, cardinals in regalia on a bus.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:33 PM on March 12, 2013 [4 favorites]


because, srsly, cardinals in regalia on a bus.

Welp, thanks for the earworm.

I have sinned insufficiently and have no Pope name. "Aevo 0" just won't cut it.
posted by maudlin at 11:25 PM on March 12, 2013


Photo of the US Cardinals hanging out on the bus.

Semi-serious question: Is there some kind of sunken-eye makeup tradition amongst cardinals? Because all three of those guys have oddly purple eye sockets, and Pope Benedict seemed to have a similar thing going on.
posted by lostburner at 12:34 AM on March 13, 2013




Is there some kind of sunken-eye makeup tradition amongst cardinals? Because all three of those guys have oddly purple eye sockets, and Pope Benedict seemed to have a similar thing going on.

Bedroom eyes.
posted by Area Man at 4:13 AM on March 13, 2013


More black smoke. The Guardian is reporting that La Stampa is reporting that most of the votes have been going to Cardinals Scola, Bergoglio and Ouellet.
posted by Area Man at 5:21 AM on March 13, 2013


The Guardian is reporting that La Stampa is reporting that most of the votes have been going to Cardinals Scola, Bergoglio and Ouellet.

I wonder how they found this out. Isn't talking about the conclave punishable by ex-communication?
posted by drezdn at 5:50 AM on March 13, 2013


I wouldn't put too much stock in it. I'm sure there are people in Rome claiming to have inside information, but that doesn't mean they actually do.
posted by Area Man at 5:54 AM on March 13, 2013


*Do not get me started on the Eastern Catholic Churches, it is pretty much my favorite topic in the world and my trivia store about it is pretty much endless.

Regale us with a few of them. /nerd
posted by ersatz at 6:09 AM on March 13, 2013


Why isn't the head of the Uniate Church a Patriarch?
posted by Area Man at 6:12 AM on March 13, 2013


eriko: "If you are excommunicate, you are separated from the sacraments, and thus, you cannot be ordained. Arguably, this would also prevent anyone under the age of 35 who is not already a bishop from becoming pope, because you need the pope to grant dispensation to ordain as bishop someone that young, and there is no pope to grant that in conclave. "

This seems like a gray area to me. As I mentioned above, Universi Dominici Gregis has a specific procedure for when the new pope is not a bishop. And the College of Cardinals does have limited regency powers during the sede vacante. So, I imagine the College would act as the pope there.

Possibly someone would object, but it's not as if there is a Supreme Court to appeal to.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:32 AM on March 13, 2013


Hello, I'm Pope Salus. You can call me Pope Sal, and I'll call you Pope Sbetty.
posted by Capt. Renault at 6:48 AM on March 13, 2013


"I'm sure there are people in Rome claiming to have inside information, but that doesn't mean they actually do."

The Vatican press corps do a pretty good job cultivating inside information, and they're pretty savvy about sorting the good sources from the bad sources, although the Italian media tend to have the best sources. I'll take a look at this morning's reporting in the English-language press when I'm a little more awake, but I would expect the Guardian either has a good Vatican reporter or is re-reporting from good reporters in the Italian press corps. There are names that Vatican-watchers know as really reliable reporters on "secret" stuff. And it all leaks out, that building is a sieve.

"Is there some kind of sunken-eye makeup tradition amongst cardinals? Because all three of those guys have oddly purple eye sockets, and Pope Benedict seemed to have a similar thing going on."

They're mostly past the age when people typically retire and we don't see them in public as much, they're NOT getting plastic surgery or wearing make-up as senior executives staying on to work in their 70s often do, and they're all jet-lagged. I mean basically they're old dudes who are tired!

Francis George (the guy in the middle front) was my bishop for a while and he seems to have really delicate skin; whenever you see him in press photos, for the last 20 years, you'd see windburn or sunburn or his skin getting rashy from the cold, or dark bags from being tired, or flushed from eating a taco ... that's just his skin, he always looks sort of terrible.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 7:25 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]




Here's a few English-language sources for good Vatican gossip coverage. The WaPo has a pretty good article on the Vaticanisti (Vatican reporters and observers) and which ones are highly respected and how the world of the Vaticanisti works.

American readers are most familiar with John Allen at National Catholic Reporter, who's built up quite a network over time. Scroll down to see his articles and blog posts, and I think he also vets the other posts on the blog. Allen doesn't report as much gossip and speculation as the Italian media below do, but he also backgrounds his pieces better because he doesn't assume his audience obsessively follows the details of Vatican machinations.

Andrea Tornielli, the most-respected of the Vaticanisti, writes at La Stampa which luckily publishes its Vatican Insider blog in English. Here's Sandro Magister at his Chiesa blog in English at L'Espresso, which has a few dodgy translations but is very readable. They report more gossip, speculation, and information from anonymous sources, but they're the most-respected and most-often-right of the Italian Vaticanisti, so if they report it from an anonymous source inside the Vatican, they're getting good info from someone in the know. They assume you already know a lot of the backstory, though, so they just throw you into the details.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 8:25 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


And Cardinal George is being treated for bladder cancer. He's been looking pretty ill lately. I think anytime you get a large group of people that in other walks of life would be retired, health issues are common.
posted by readery at 8:31 AM on March 13, 2013




There's a gull on the flue. The crowd seem rather happy with that.

Long live Pope Larus!
posted by Jehan at 9:38 AM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


That seagull already has two twitter parody accounts (@ConclaveSeagull and @SistineSeagull)!
posted by gladly at 9:48 AM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


There needs to be a measurement for how quickly something gets its own twitter account.
posted by drezdn at 10:09 AM on March 13, 2013


Apparently ConclaveSeagull has already has his account suspended. :(
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 10:23 AM on March 13, 2013


There needs to be a measurement for how quickly something gets its own twitter account.

Inanoseconds?
posted by yoink at 10:32 AM on March 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


White smoke.
posted by Jehan at 11:06 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


WHITE SMOKE!
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:06 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


New pope!
posted by spinifex23 at 11:07 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Who is it? Do we know yet?
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 11:10 AM on March 13, 2013


Dennis Rodman gets things done.
posted by drezdn at 11:10 AM on March 13, 2013 [9 favorites]


In a surprise twist they've named a noted German sociologist and public intellectual.

That's right: Habemus Habermas.
posted by yoink at 11:11 AM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


We don't know yet. It will be announced soon.
posted by Jehan at 11:11 AM on March 13, 2013


has an earworm
posted by maggieb at 11:12 AM on March 13, 2013


Who is it? Do we know yet?

It took about 40 minutes last time around for the announcement of who it was and then another 10 minutes for the pope to appear on the balcony.
posted by Jahaza at 11:14 AM on March 13, 2013


It was an honor just to be nominated.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:14 AM on March 13, 2013 [10 favorites]


Is it me or was this really fast?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:15 AM on March 13, 2013


Same as last time, isn't it?
posted by Jehan at 11:16 AM on March 13, 2013


Last time, I heard the bells of the Catholic Church a few blocks away before CNN refreshed with the news. Seeing "WHITE SMOKE!" on Twitter is a major letdown. I liked the bells so much better, felt like lighting a chain of bonfires or some such.
posted by sonika at 11:16 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Most "informed" reports I've read were expecting a contentious and long process, lasting until Friday or so.
posted by drezdn at 11:16 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


A few hours longer than it took to elect Ratzinger.
posted by frimble at 11:16 AM on March 13, 2013


It takes between 25 and 45 minutes for them to do some praying, garb the new pope, and get everything all set to make the announcement, so probably between 2:30 and 3 p.m. Eastern time we'll know the name and what name he's chosen.

I think five ballots is surprisingly fast, which makes me curious whether the curia or the anti-curial reformers were able to consolidate support so quickly behind their candidate, since that seemed to be what the pre-conclave politicking and the reports we got from the conclave suggested the primary division was.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:16 AM on March 13, 2013


Just to stir shit, the Roman Pagans should name a new Pontifex Maximus today, too.
posted by COBRA! at 11:17 AM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


I have a voice mail I haven't listened to yet.
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 11:17 AM on March 13, 2013 [11 favorites]


Same as last time, isn't it?

Unclear at this point, it was the fourth ballot last time, but this time it may have been the fifth.
posted by Jahaza at 11:17 AM on March 13, 2013


And now for the traditional response of "Who?" or "Oh, shit."
posted by Capt. Renault at 11:18 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


*fingers crossed* Not Dolan... Not Dolan... Not Dolan...
posted by drezdn at 11:19 AM on March 13, 2013


Someone at the Guardian appears to be saying this ranks fourth in the ten conclaves since 1900, in terms of speed.
posted by gubo at 11:21 AM on March 13, 2013


Meanwhile, Carlos the janitor mumbles to himself, "Turn me down for promotion did they? After thirty years...." His knees creak as he bends down to plug in the Wacky Waving Arms Inflatable Tube Guy he stored on the balcony early this morning.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:22 AM on March 13, 2013 [11 favorites]


And with the first pick in the 2013 Papal Draft, The Vatican picks Robert Griffin III.
posted by drezdn at 11:24 AM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


The reason for the delay is that they only had the blessings in Parisian French, which Ouellet can't pronounce.
posted by Lemurrhea at 11:25 AM on March 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


Is it a girl?
posted by shothotbot at 11:27 AM on March 13, 2013


Let me get this straight. White smoke means Kate Middleton gave birth to a boy, right?
posted by magstheaxe at 11:27 AM on March 13, 2013


Various news outlets are now reporting that new Pope has been selected. Identity to be known within an hour once he has new wardrobe.
posted by zeikka at 11:28 AM on March 13, 2013


I'm going to guess Scola.
posted by drezdn at 11:28 AM on March 13, 2013


Any last bets to be placed on the winner? On his chosen name?

Mesdames et monsieurs, faites vos jeux!
posted by Capt. Renault at 11:28 AM on March 13, 2013


Thanks for the breaking news, zeikka.
posted by Justinian at 11:29 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Scalia?
posted by KokuRyu at 11:29 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


This is going to change everything for my Fantasy Roman Catholic League game.
posted by Zed at 11:29 AM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


drezdn: I'm going to guess Scola.

Yeah, this quick? That's my guess too.
posted by Rock Steady at 11:29 AM on March 13, 2013


On the Borgias they had to check his papal "plumbing" too.
posted by shothotbot at 11:29 AM on March 13, 2013


Identity to be known within an hour once he has new wardrobe.

If I recall correctly, he just activates his bracelet transmitter, and pieces of the Pope Suit immediately fly onto him, locking together with a series of cool whirrs and clicks.
posted by Greg Nog at 11:29 AM on March 13, 2013 [11 favorites]


Scalia would be sweet, too.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 11:29 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Rob Thomas (the Veronica Mars one, because I can't choose Kristen Bell)
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:29 AM on March 13, 2013


Given the speed (which seems fast, despite being longer than Papa Ratzi), one of the frontrunners seems likely. Scola. (But my bet was on Ravasi, with hopes for Bagoglio.)
posted by Capt. Renault at 11:30 AM on March 13, 2013




For Pope Name, I say Paul or Pius.
posted by Rock Steady at 11:30 AM on March 13, 2013


Is it a girl?

It's pretty sad that Mr. Seagull has a better chance of becoming pope than a woman.
posted by raztaj at 11:31 AM on March 13, 2013


Oy. REALLY hoping it's not Cannibal Cop.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:31 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


I think it'll be a while before there's another Pius.
posted by drezdn at 11:32 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


All hail the new pope Cortex I.
posted by humanfont at 11:33 AM on March 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


Still betting on Gregory. Maybe -- maybe -- an Urban.
posted by Capt. Renault at 11:33 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


They're marching in a brass band and some guys with pole arms so we're getting closer; they've broken in on the network channels, I'm watching on NBC, the filler commentary isn't terrible.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:33 AM on March 13, 2013


some guys with pole arms

The preferred term is "scarecrow"
posted by Greg Nog at 11:34 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


I think it'll be a while before there's another Pius.

But surely now is the time for a Hybrid Pope?
posted by yoink at 11:35 AM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


I still say Peter. So vintage!
posted by saturday_morning at 11:35 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


How exciting! I'm glad that I've got an office where I can watch the livestream while working.
posted by Elly Vortex at 11:35 AM on March 13, 2013


Call me old school, but I love the big Broadway dance number they wind things up with.
posted by KokuRyu at 11:35 AM on March 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


I've got CNBC on a continuous loop here at work - but the financial commentary keeps taking focus so y'all are my most direct source here.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:35 AM on March 13, 2013


"NBC, the filler commentary isn't terrible."

This is the best review NBC has gotten in years.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:35 AM on March 13, 2013 [7 favorites]


There's been a rather limited range of Pope names for the last few centuries. Why no Pope Hormisdas?
posted by Cash4Lead at 11:36 AM on March 13, 2013


Holding out a long shot ticket for either "on-a-rope" or "a-dope".
posted by cortex at 11:36 AM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Does the pope have a "Here comes the Pope" song, sort of like "Hail to the Chief" for the President of the United States?
posted by Elly Vortex at 11:37 AM on March 13, 2013


I'm partial to Pope Bob myself.
posted by ZeusHumms at 11:37 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Chrysostom: "Why the pope wears red shoes."

There's an Elvis Costello, the-pope-ain't-no-angel joke in there somewhere, but I can't find it.
posted by notsnot at 11:37 AM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


If he goes with Innocent I'm going to laugh.
posted by Cash4Lead at 11:38 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


I don't want to hear this crap talking head's evaluation of this election, I want to know what song that damn band is playing.
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 11:38 AM on March 13, 2013


Does the pope have a "Here comes the Pope" song, sort of like "Hail to the Chief" for the President of the United States?

Not officially, but KT Tunstall's "Suddenly I See" usually plays when there's a montage of the Pope shopping and learning to Believe in Himself
posted by Greg Nog at 11:39 AM on March 13, 2013 [27 favorites]


I'm watching the livestream on the New York Times website. There is no commentary whatsoever. I am not sure if this is better or worse.

It seems like the band is on a loop.
posted by ocherdraco at 11:40 AM on March 13, 2013


I'd pay good money to see that Marching Pope Band do a UM-like halftime show
posted by jamaro at 11:40 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Is that the Italian navy to the rescue?
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 11:40 AM on March 13, 2013


The live link posted above has no commentary. Just the background music and sounds.
posted by spinifex23 at 11:41 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


My last minute prediction
posted by Flunkie at 11:41 AM on March 13, 2013


Senior elector Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re asked pope-to-be, in Latin: 'Do you accept your election as supreme pontiff?'

Inferno sic, infantem. Inferno sic.
posted by ersatz at 11:41 AM on March 13, 2013


Broadcast with no talking heads is on the Vatican website
posted by fimbulvetr at 11:41 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


If he goes with Innocent I'm going to laugh.

If he goes with Pope Guilty we can tell him he'll have to be Pope Guilty II.
posted by yoink at 11:41 AM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]




YOU CAN KEEP YOUR POPE AND CHANGE ILL KEEP MY GUNS ETC, NOBAMA
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:42 AM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


jamaro: I'd pay good money to see that Marching Pope Band do a UM-like halftime show

I love watching them dot the i in "Christ"
posted by Rock Steady at 11:42 AM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


This is all so gloriously medieval.
posted by jokeefe at 11:42 AM on March 13, 2013


Love the polearms. But not sure how useful they are these days.
posted by caution live frogs at 11:42 AM on March 13, 2013


Hope the new pope won't depend on google translate for his Latin needs though.
posted by ersatz at 11:42 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Right now some dude is squatting over a gilded toilet taking a mother of all terror shits.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:42 AM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


Hmm, Italian national anthem? I still hoped we were a separate nation. :(
posted by lydhre at 11:42 AM on March 13, 2013


My word, this is going to be fabulous for European tourism. Any event with this many funny hats can't fail to attract the tourist dollar.
posted by Jehan at 11:42 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


caution live frogs: "Love the polearms. But not sure how useful they are these days."

They also have big guns.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:44 AM on March 13, 2013


From "Whispers in the Loggia":
For purposes of context, the 2005 election of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger – tipped by many as the "front-runner" – as Benedict XVI took four ballots; the October 1978 result that saw Karol Wojtyla become John Paul II took eight ballots.
posted by ocherdraco at 11:44 AM on March 13, 2013


Drat, they put their ceremonial swords away. I was hoping for a duel.
posted by caution live frogs at 11:44 AM on March 13, 2013


Wow, the rank and file Swiss Guards (or at least I assume Swiss Guards) are surprisingly unprofessional. This one's got a slack jaw, that one's staring off to the side, that other one is looking all over the place.
posted by Flunkie at 11:46 AM on March 13, 2013


what is everyone chanting?
posted by Elly Vortex at 11:46 AM on March 13, 2013


Here is a list of cardinal electors first names in latin, so you can understand the announcement.
posted by Area Man at 11:46 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Anyone else hearing the "Viva el Papa!" cheers on St. Peter's Square?
posted by CrazyLemonade at 11:46 AM on March 13, 2013


is everyone just yelling out their favorite...like we want Stan! or something?
posted by OHenryPacey at 11:47 AM on March 13, 2013


(on the livestream of course, not there myself)
posted by CrazyLemonade at 11:47 AM on March 13, 2013


I love it when you call me el papa...
posted by OHenryPacey at 11:47 AM on March 13, 2013


Yeah, it's Viva el Papa or We Want Papa or something like that.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 11:47 AM on March 13, 2013


One of the main chants is "Vive il Papa!"
posted by Jehan at 11:47 AM on March 13, 2013


The New York Times is saying they're chanting “Habemus papam!” which means "we have a pope".
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:48 AM on March 13, 2013


If he goes with Innocent I'm going to laugh.

Hail Pope Innocent XLII!
posted by homunculus at 11:48 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Welease Bwian!"
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 11:48 AM on March 13, 2013 [8 favorites]


Pink Smoke? Awesome!
posted by jeffburdges at 11:48 AM on March 13, 2013


OK, so they aren't asking for Papa John's.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 11:48 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Apparently, for all the talk of Twitter accounts, the Vatican has also taken new media lessons from watching reality shows. "We'll be right back with the new pope...after this."
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:49 AM on March 13, 2013


Habemus Peepam. We have marshmallow peeps!
posted by bondcliff at 11:49 AM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


I swear I heard someone shout "Free Bird!"
posted by Elly Vortex at 11:49 AM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


The New York Times is saying they're chanting “Habemus papam!” which means "we have a pope".
They were certainly chanting that when then smoke came out, but it sounds like they've stopped now.
posted by Jehan at 11:50 AM on March 13, 2013


A tweet by NTV Kenya, since deleted: "BREAKING NEWS: Habemus Papam elected the new Catholic #Pope."
posted by ocherdraco at 11:50 AM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


Pope Zosimus II would be totally metal.
posted by hangashore at 11:50 AM on March 13, 2013


The New York Times is saying they're chanting “Habemus papam!” which means "we have a pope".

nope, it's definitely "Viva el Papa, Viva el Papa"

Don't underestimate the enthusiasm of Hispanic pilgrims, they can out-cheer the Italians.
posted by CrazyLemonade at 11:52 AM on March 13, 2013


Dang how long does it take to take off a red dress and put on a white one already? Do we have to wait until the end of sweeps week to reveal The Next Pope?
posted by caution live frogs at 11:52 AM on March 13, 2013


Dear Governments of the World:

This would be a great moment to announce tax increases and service cuts. Move while you've got some cover.
posted by magstheaxe at 11:52 AM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


Habemus Peepam. We have marshmallow peeps!

Yes we do.
posted by Cash4Lead at 11:52 AM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


Listening to the chatter on EWTN while I wait to see who is the new Pope is so refreshing compared to the news channels, many of whom do not understand Catholicism at all.
posted by SuzySmith at 11:52 AM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


(and I say this as someone who is no longer Catholic, but who grew up in the Church.)
posted by SuzySmith at 11:53 AM on March 13, 2013


Breaking news: Pope Benedict XVI appears on balcony with boombox blasting Never Gonna Give You Up, solidifying reputation as most social media-savvy pope
posted by oulipian at 11:54 AM on March 13, 2013 [24 favorites]


I haven't gotten the call yet. They're leaving it kinda late...
posted by Capt. Renault at 11:54 AM on March 13, 2013


No crowd surfing yet.
posted by Kabanos at 11:55 AM on March 13, 2013


For the next release, they really should put in a "Skip Cutscene" button.
posted by Flunkie at 11:55 AM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Capt. Renault: I haven't gotten the call yet. They're leaving it kinda late...

As my wife said when I told her I was bummed the phone hadn't rung yet, "Second runner-up ain't bad."
posted by Rock Steady at 11:55 AM on March 13, 2013


I hope they bring back Elvis.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 11:56 AM on March 13, 2013


Does the pope have a "Here comes the Pope" song, sort of like "Hail to the Chief" for the President of the United States?

Not exactly analogous, but "Tu Es Petrus" is frequently used for his entrances. There is also the Pontifical Anthem.
posted by Jahaza at 11:56 AM on March 13, 2013


Romney campaign holding presser to emphasize that they're not giving up on this thing.
posted by cortex at 11:56 AM on March 13, 2013 [11 favorites]


The new Pope should be spirited away via underground tunnel, come tearing back into the square driving the Popemobile, hop out, shoot grappling hook up to balcony, zip up there and then give the speech.
posted by mikepop at 11:56 AM on March 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


I'm hungry for Indian food all of a sudden. Habemus Papadum!
posted by benito.strauss at 11:57 AM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


Jahaza: ""Tu Es Petrus" is frequently used for his entrances"

I would have thought "Pope and Circumstance"
posted by caution live frogs at 11:58 AM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


Wonder if one day people will hear 'habemus mamam!'
posted by ersatz at 11:58 AM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Anyone else wondering about a Blazing Saddles Welcome Sheriff moment
posted by shothotbot at 11:58 AM on March 13, 2013


Is the Prince song "The Pope" really not on Youtube?
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 11:59 AM on March 13, 2013


mikepop: The new Pope should be spirited away via underground tunnel, come tearing back into the square driving the Popemobile, hop out, shoot grappling hook up to balcony, zip up there skydive directly onto balcony and then give the speech.
posted by Rock Steady at 11:59 AM on March 13, 2013


Rock Steady, but then you miss the whole "ascension" theme.
posted by mikepop at 12:00 PM on March 13, 2013


Prince is notorious for going hard after copyright infringement.
posted by Flunkie at 12:01 PM on March 13, 2013


If only Paul Bearer lasted another week and a half. This whole intro could have been done right.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 12:01 PM on March 13, 2013


Wonder if one day people will hear 'habemus mamam!'
It would be "habemus mammam" with two 'm's. Happily, that also means "we have the tits!"
posted by Jehan at 12:02 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


Wingsuit >>> skydiving.
posted by ZeusHumms at 12:02 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


New pope: "Does this mean I have to work on St. Patrick's Day? Because I was kind of planning on getting wasted."
posted by mcmile at 12:02 PM on March 13, 2013


You'd think that someone who's infallable could show up on time.
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:02 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


They should have gone with Jennifer Lawrence. Everyone loves Jennifer Lawrence.
posted by drezdn at 12:03 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Shit. I had no idea Paul Bearer had died.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 12:03 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Is the Prince song "The Pope" really not on Youtube?

Found It; it was on DailyMotion.
posted by Greg Nog at 12:03 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Evil.
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 12:05 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


did the lights just come on?
posted by Kabanos at 12:06 PM on March 13, 2013


I hope it's not Slytherin again.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:06 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


big cheer
posted by ocherdraco at 12:06 PM on March 13, 2013


something's happening!
posted by Elly Vortex at 12:06 PM on March 13, 2013


Movement of people by the curtain! Doors opening!
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:06 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


I wish the Catholic Church and I could agree on theology, all the pomp and circumstance and giant crowds anxiously awaiting old men in hats just seems like so much fun.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 12:07 PM on March 13, 2013 [10 favorites]


And shutting as nothing continues to happen!
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:07 PM on March 13, 2013


I love when cheering crowds are large enough that they get out of rhythm with one another.
posted by ocherdraco at 12:07 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


I think they must have paused for a Sistine Chapel smoke or something
posted by caution live frogs at 12:08 PM on March 13, 2013


Shut the french doors!
posted by Kabanos at 12:08 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Wait, I thought you picked a new Pope!"
posted by Rock Steady at 12:08 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


WHAT IS THE FREAKIN HOLDUP
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:08 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Pope Invisible I!
posted by robocop is bleeding at 12:09 PM on March 13, 2013 [7 favorites]


Someone probably had to go to the bathroom.
posted by Curious Artificer at 12:09 PM on March 13, 2013


Movement of people by the curtain! Doors opening!

I didn't even know Ray Manzarek was Catholic!
posted by Sys Rq at 12:09 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


Someone probably had to go to the bathroom.

He should have thought of that when they asked if he had to go.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:10 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Steve Jobs???
posted by Kabanos at 12:10 PM on March 13, 2013


Jesus, Jon Snow struggling on Channel 4 News to fill airtime. "Vincent Nichols [Archbishop of Westminster, head of the Church in England & Wales], your reaction, even though you don't know who it is?"
posted by Len at 12:10 PM on March 13, 2013


Maybe they needed a breath of fresh air.
posted by ZeusHumms at 12:10 PM on March 13, 2013


Not sure what the delay is, but I'm positive Tom Hanks has something to do with it.
posted by goHermGO at 12:10 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Someone send Tom Hanks in there to figure out what's going on.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:10 PM on March 13, 2013


Pope Invisible I!

It's Obama!
posted by drezdn at 12:10 PM on March 13, 2013


Jinx!
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:11 PM on March 13, 2013


what happens if they tell they guy and he drops dead on the spot?
posted by OHenryPacey at 12:11 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yeah, it's Viva el Papa or We Want Papa or something like that.

No potatoes in the Vatican.
posted by palbo at 12:11 PM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


I just hope the new pope is ready for all the Meta threads complaining about his deletions.
posted by shakespeherian at 12:11 PM on March 13, 2013


Is the door stuck?
posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:11 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


I should be clear that that's "Jesus ... Jon Snow is struggling," and not "Jesus and Jon Snow are struggling to fill airtime."
posted by Len at 12:12 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Pope Cameraman I
posted by Sys Rq at 12:12 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


I wonder if he saw the movie Habemus Papam and is now spooked.
posted by ocherdraco at 12:12 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Someone probably had to go to the bathroom.
posted by Curious Artificer at 3:09 PM on March 13


I have to go to the bathroom and you'll notice I'm still here! Put on your big boy pants and get out there, already! #fullbladder
posted by magstheaxe at 12:12 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


He's standing there, who is he?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:12 PM on March 13, 2013


Here we go!
posted by ocherdraco at 12:12 PM on March 13, 2013


It's an old guy!
posted by Kabanos at 12:12 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


Turns out he had outstanding library fines, and won't let him graduate.
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:12 PM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


Ahhhhhhhh someone is coming out!!!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 12:12 PM on March 13, 2013


Oops, hype guy is out...
posted by robocop is bleeding at 12:12 PM on March 13, 2013


It's Bergoglio.
posted by Cash4Lead at 12:12 PM on March 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


From Argentina.
posted by Cash4Lead at 12:13 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


It is the Argentine? I totally called this shit!
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 12:13 PM on March 13, 2013


Francisco?
posted by mattbucher at 12:13 PM on March 13, 2013


Pope Francisco
posted by zombieflanders at 12:13 PM on March 13, 2013


He's already Pope Francis on Wikipedia
posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:13 PM on March 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


Francisco!
posted by Elly Vortex at 12:13 PM on March 13, 2013


Good lord, Wikipedia was fast on the draw.
posted by anastasiav at 12:13 PM on March 13, 2013


I should be clear that that's "Jesus ... Jon Snow is struggling," and not "Jesus and Jon Snow are struggling to fill airtime.

Obviously. Everyone knows Jesus can fill airtime like nobody's business. He's better than a combination of Ryan Seacrest and Regis Philbin.
posted by Area Man at 12:14 PM on March 13, 2013


76 years old? For real? Benedict was 78. So much for a younger guy.
posted by mattbucher at 12:14 PM on March 13, 2013


I was really hoping it would one of the Peters.
posted by mediated self at 12:14 PM on March 13, 2013


DON'T CRY FOR ME, ARGENTINAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA! THE TRUTH IS I NEVER LEFT YOUUUUUUUUU.....
posted by magstheaxe at 12:14 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


Oooh, Francis is an interesting choice of name.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:14 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, Argentina?
posted by ocherdraco at 12:14 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, Argentina.
posted by troika at 12:14 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


Translation: "LLLLLET'S GET RRRRRREADY TO RRRRUMBLLLLLE!!!!!
posted by Sys Rq at 12:14 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yay! There were so many worse options
posted by Blasdelb at 12:14 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


The crowd seems bummed.
posted by Perplexity at 12:14 PM on March 13, 2013


First Jesuit Pope.
posted by Cash4Lead at 12:14 PM on March 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


MAZEL TOV!
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:15 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Pope Frank!
posted by Our Ship Of The Imagination! at 12:15 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Wow, ocherdraco, our posts worked out really well.
posted by troika at 12:15 PM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


Chill out, Francis.
posted by Rock Steady at 12:15 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Olé, olé, olé, olé
posted by Kabanos at 12:15 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


First Jesuit Pope.

That's kind of shocking, actually.
posted by anastasiav at 12:15 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm actually kind of psyched for a new Papal name. They're not going back to any of the really nice medieval names, and if we had another John I would be kind of pissed.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 12:15 PM on March 13, 2013


Indeed, troika, indeed.
posted by ocherdraco at 12:15 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Francis is such a rad saint I hope this pope talks to birds and gives away all his money
posted by theodolite at 12:15 PM on March 13, 2013 [24 favorites]


Why are they hanging a tablecloth off the balcony?
posted by magstheaxe at 12:15 PM on March 13, 2013


Cheers.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:16 PM on March 13, 2013


I want to see what's going on in Buenos Aires. Who's got a feed?
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 12:16 PM on March 13, 2013


Pope Francis
posted by notme at 12:16 PM on March 13, 2013


Francis? He'd better do some naked hangin' out with animals pronto.
posted by shakespeherian at 12:16 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


I assume someone else already grabbed the Twitter handle?
posted by bondcliff at 12:16 PM on March 13, 2013


Pope Frisco.
posted by wabbittwax at 12:16 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Why are they hanging a tablecloth off the balcony?
to show he was a virgin
posted by shothotbot at 12:16 PM on March 13, 2013 [30 favorites]


Finally argentinians get confirmation from God that we're the bestest people of the world!
posted by palbo at 12:17 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Jesuit Pope! Jesuits overall are regarded as being liberal within the Church (note: by MetaFilter standards, this means they are only very very conservative, as opposed to very very very conservative), but Bergoglio is fairly conservative among Jesuits.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 12:17 PM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


"On April 15, 2005, a human rights lawyer filed a criminal complaint against Bergoglio, accusing him of conspiring with the junta in 1976 to kidnap two Jesuit priests, whom he, as superior of the Society of Jesus of Argentina in 1976, had asked to leave their pastoral work following conflict within the Society over how to respond to the new military dictatorship, with some priests advocating a violent overthrow. Bergoglio's spokesman has flatly denied the allegations. No evidence was presented linking the cardinal to this crime."
From Wikipedia
posted by zeikka at 12:17 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


Why are they hanging a tablecloth off the balcony?
It's either picnic time, or proof of virginity.
posted by antiquated at 12:17 PM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


He lived in an apartment, cooked his own meals, and took the bus to work. That's all cool.
posted by Area Man at 12:17 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


From Wikipedia:

"He has affirmed church teaching on homosexuality, though he teaches the importance of respecting individuals who are gay. He strongly opposed legislation introduced in 2010 by the Argentine Government to allow same-sex marriage. In a letter to the monasteries of Buenos Aires, he wrote: 'Let's not be naive, we're not talking about a simple political battle; it is a destructive pretension against the plan of God. We are not talking about a mere bill, but rather a machination of the Father of Lies that seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God.' He has also insisted that adoption by gays and lesbians is a form of discrimination against children."

So... great, sounds like just the guy to lead the church into the future.
posted by caution live frogs at 12:18 PM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


And reading his Wiki page - he has "publically challenged free-market policies" and is big on social welfare and aid to the poor.

REALLY interesting when you consider the current economic climate.

And Jesuits are TOTAL badass.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:18 PM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


God, between the country of the new pope and the balcony, I'm re-writing every song from Evita in my head all at once and it's making me dizzy. This is as close to a religious experience as the Catholic Church is going to give me any time soon.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:19 PM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


Wait, is this also the first Pope we've had from the Americas? I think it may be.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:19 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


How conservative is he? His wikipedia page makes him actually sound centrist by the standards of old catholic men; statements like has "invited his clergy and laity to oppose both abortion and euthanasia" don't make him sound too conservative.

The fact that he's a Jesuit makes him seem like a decently progressive choice as well.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 12:19 PM on March 13, 2013


Correction: When they asked him what name he wanted, he said "Let me be frank..."
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:20 PM on March 13, 2013 [15 favorites]


I mean I don't expect a new Pope to be all gay-friendly or anything, but "gay marriage is a tool of Satan" is just... damn.

But hey, at least he isn't European. That's new.
posted by caution live frogs at 12:20 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


The CBC is calling him a "moderate". Let's see if he really does keep the focus on social justice and the poor. Maybe his new red shoes will be from Payless, not Prada.
posted by maudlin at 12:20 PM on March 13, 2013


The archbishop of Buenos Aires is a Jesuit intellectual who travels by bus and has a practical approach to poverty: when he was appointed a cardinal, Bergoglio persuaded hundreds of Argentinians not to fly to Rome to celebrate with him but instead to give the money they would have spent on plane tickets to the poor. He was a fierce opponent of Argentina's decision to legalise gay marriage in 2010, arguing children need to have the right to be raised and educated by a father and a mother. He was created a cardinal by John Paul II on 21 February 2001. (from Guardian)

Apparently a mixed bag, but considering that a pro-SSM pope would be quite improbable, a pro-poor choice seems good.
posted by ersatz at 12:20 PM on March 13, 2013 [7 favorites]


Saint Malachy rips up his prophecies in disgust.
posted by drezdn at 12:20 PM on March 13, 2013


More details on his blaming of Argentine gay rights on Satan himself.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 12:21 PM on March 13, 2013


Against abortion. Against adoption of children by gay couples. Against gay marriage. Same old, same old.
posted by zarq at 12:21 PM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]



So... great, sounds like just the guy to lead the church into the future.
posted by caution live frogs at 3:18 PM on March 13


Did anyone seriously think we were going to get a Pope who'd just throw out the Church's stance on gays and gay rights?
posted by magstheaxe at 12:21 PM on March 13, 2013 [17 favorites]


Wait, is this also the first Pope we've had from the Americas? I think it may be.

Aye, first pope from the New World. And first Jesuit pope, if this news guy is correct.
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 12:21 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


What are the odds he'll be a little understanding about condoms in Africa?
posted by shakespeherian at 12:21 PM on March 13, 2013


Papa Paco!
posted by CrazyLemonade at 12:21 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Here he comes!
posted by ocherdraco at 12:21 PM on March 13, 2013


WHAT IS EVEN GOING ON WE HAVE A JESUIT ARGENTINIAN MODERATE CURIA-REFORMING POPE NAMED FRANCIS MY BRAIN CANNOT EVEN PROCESS ALL THIS NOVELTY AND HOW DID THEY GET THERE IN JUST FIVE BALLOTS?
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 12:21 PM on March 13, 2013 [21 favorites]


whats the encore going to be?
posted by Kabanos at 12:22 PM on March 13, 2013


Not just Pope Francis, but Pope Francis I. Who was it upthread who wanted novelty in a papal name?
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 12:22 PM on March 13, 2013


Against abortion. Against adoption of children by gay couples. Against gay marriage. Same old, same old.

Because there were other cardinals that weren't?
posted by leotrotsky at 12:22 PM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


According to the Guardian's Pontifficator, he's also open to dialogue with other faiths, believes in contraception to prevent the spread of disease, is not facing questions over any abuse scandals, is not facing questions over the handling of the Vatileaks scandal, and is Moderate in outlook. So it's not all bad.
posted by rewil at 12:22 PM on March 13, 2013 [10 favorites]


As good as I could have hoped for. Which is good!
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:22 PM on March 13, 2013


Nice try, Francis. You can become Pope, but you're still not getting Pee-Wee's bicycle.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 12:22 PM on March 13, 2013 [10 favorites]


He looks suitably Popey.
posted by Rock Steady at 12:23 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Boo for the Father of Lies thing though.
posted by ersatz at 12:23 PM on March 13, 2013


Did anyone seriously think we were going to get a Pope who'd just throw out the Church's stance on gays and gay rights?

Seriously. There aren't even any candidates who support that any of those things. You can only reasonably expect so much.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 12:23 PM on March 13, 2013


¡Tenemos Papa!
posted by Rhaomi at 12:24 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


*throws confetti*
posted by magstheaxe at 12:24 PM on March 13, 2013


Looking at the new Pope, I hope he pulls out a lollipop, sucks on it a bit, and says, "QUE TE AMAT PUER?"
posted by robocop is bleeding at 12:24 PM on March 13, 2013


He's apparently vowed a humble papacy?
posted by Navelgazer at 12:24 PM on March 13, 2013


"Any of you homos call me Pope Francis... and I'll kill you."
posted by bondcliff at 12:24 PM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


I didn't have a dog in this hunt but I'm surprised they didn't go with a younger guy.
posted by fuse theorem at 12:24 PM on March 13, 2013


Let me express my appreciation that the new pope doesn't seem as conservative, anti-gay, anti-humanist, anti-feminist etc. as other cardinals might have been. Let me also express my hopes for continued reform within the church, continued prosecution of the crimes of its clergy, and continued success to those fighting to oppose the church's work to make the laws of nations inimical to human rights.
posted by audi alteram partem at 12:25 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


hmm... I suddenly recall the House of Cards spoof linked to way up above. FRANCIS Underwood ????
posted by Kabanos at 12:25 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


does he shit in the woods?
posted by OHenryPacey at 12:25 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


And still Messi is the biggest Argentinian in Europe.
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:25 PM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


WHAT IS EVEN GOING ON WE HAVE A JESUIT ARGENTINIAN MODERATE CURIA-REFORMING POPE NAMED FRANCIS MY BRAIN CANNOT EVEN PROCESS ALL THIS NOVELTY AND HOW DID THEY GET THERE IN JUST FIVE BALLOTS?

If Wikipedia is to be trusted, dude was the runner-up in the last conclave. This should be as shocking as Mitt Romney running for President in 2012. Especially given the small number of ballots.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 12:25 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


believes in contraception to prevent the spread of disease

If that becomes official policy, it would be bloody great.
posted by ersatz at 12:25 PM on March 13, 2013 [12 favorites]


"Any of you homos call me Pope Francis... and I'll kill you."

Knock it off Pope Francis.
posted by cmfletcher at 12:25 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


fuse theorem, I imagine it will be a long time before we see a younger Pope again. Pope John Paul II was elected when young and was Pope a long time. Many people think it was too long and prefer a Pope only be Pope a limited number of years.
posted by SuzySmith at 12:26 PM on March 13, 2013


So, any thoughts on what Francis implies as a papal moniker? Is he going to lay off the ermine and embrace poverty?

"Poverty was so central to his character that in his last written work, the Testament, he said that absolute personal and corporate poverty was the essential lifestyle for the members of his order"
posted by leotrotsky at 12:26 PM on March 13, 2013


Kind of crazy they got there on the fifth ballot, considering all the novelty (and all the newscasters' saying it was going to take forever), although if he was in fact the runner up last time, I guess not so surprising after all.

Quoting my Argentine friend's reaction: now we have God (Maradona) and the Pope!
posted by pitrified at 12:26 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


"Any of you homos call me Pope Francis... and I'll kill you."

LIGHTEN UP, FRANCIS!!
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 12:27 PM on March 13, 2013 [8 favorites]


Rock Steady: Chill out, Francis.

Dumbass me. It's "Lighten up, Francis."
posted by Rock Steady at 12:27 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Is the dude on the mic slacking off, or is the new pope mumbling and drifting off in like, his very first prayer?
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 12:27 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


it's 'Lighten Up...Francis" btw
posted by OHenryPacey at 12:27 PM on March 13, 2013


Let me express my appreciation that the new pope doesn't seem as conservative, anti-gay, anti-humanist, anti-feminist etc. as other cardinals might have been. Let me also express my hopes for continued reform within the church, continued prosecution of the crimes of its clergy, and continued success to those fighting to oppose the church's work to make the laws of nations inimical to human rights.
posted by audi alteram partem at 3:25 PM on March 13


Hear, hear.


I just realized: if Pope Francis is actually this much of a "liberal" (by papal standards, at any rate), Darth Benedict must be pretty ticked at the choice.
posted by magstheaxe at 12:27 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


How would anyone know for sure he was second last time? The ballots are secret and if anyone reveals they will be excommunicated?
posted by SuzySmith at 12:29 PM on March 13, 2013


Bulgaroktonos: "You can only reasonably expect so much."

Yes. But "tool of Satan" is still a bit too much. One can oppose gay marriage without couching it in those terms. That's the bit that makes me wary.
posted by caution live frogs at 12:29 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


He seriously just opened with a joke! That the cardinals took a while because they had to go to the other side of the world (Argentina) to find a bishop for Rome, something along those lines (my Italian isn't great).

Given that there are no true liberals in the College of Cardinals, this guy is one of maybe the three most liberal (moderate) cardinals of the right age. I am excited for his focus on the social gospel and service to the poor. It's also fantastic that he just asked the people to bless him before he blessed them.

I think Francis is a really promising sign as a name, probably suggesting a commitment to the poor and possibly a focus on environmental issues.

"This should be as shocking as Mitt Romney running for President in 2012. Especially given the small number of ballots."

The curia's in a really different situation than it was five years ago, and five years ago there was a clear frontrunner, and five years ago there were still voting liberals in the College.

This is a hell of a job to give to a 76-year-old guy. Man.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 12:29 PM on March 13, 2013 [11 favorites]


I like how I didn't get any new posts during the silent prayer. Nice timing, my beloved atheists.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:30 PM on March 13, 2013


@CatholicNewsSvc translating remarks.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 12:30 PM on March 13, 2013


Is the dude on the mic slacking off, or is the new pope mumbling and drifting off in like, his very first prayer?

When you have the prayers memorized in your native language, it can actually be really difficult to say them properly in another, no matter how fluent you are. Those were the most common prayers of Catholicism, and they are probably more in muscle memory than something he really thinks about. So, the spanish-speaking part of his brain probably keeps trying to take over, and he has to force himself to keep going in Italian.
posted by ocherdraco at 12:31 PM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


Because there were other cardinals that weren't?

Not the point.

Considering the sheer volume of Catholics in this world, and how much weight the Church's voice carries in many countries, some of us who are not Catholic would like to see the Church be less regressive and more tolerant of those it vocally does not approve.

Especially since Church clergy spend quite a bit of time in this country and others (including Argentina, where the new Pope is from, trying to impose those regressive, intolerant views on the rest of us through secular legislation.
posted by zarq at 12:31 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


I keep reading that in 2001, he went to a hospice to kiss and wash the feet of 12 AIDS patients.
posted by Area Man at 12:31 PM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


Wait, did I just get an indulgence through twitter? I think I did.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 12:31 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


You'd need the David Souter of popes to get one that's pro-choice, pro-gay, etc.
posted by drezdn at 12:31 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Reports coming in that Pope Francis is on the record as hating boats, vans, airplanes, Ellis' hat, Mondays, sewers, gravel, etc.
posted by cortex at 12:32 PM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


Not just Pope Francis, but Pope Francis I. Who was it upthread who wanted novelty in a papal name?
That was me (maybe among others). I applaud him for it, but I still would have preferred Pope Zeppo.

Regarding "Francis I", though, are you sure? Wikipedia, at least, seems to add "I" only after there's been a "II". So for example Marinus I because there was a Marinus II, but Sisinnius because there's never been a Sisinnius II.
posted by Flunkie at 12:32 PM on March 13, 2013


Whatever, this is already old news. The official Veronica Mars movie Kickstarter already broke $1million, why isn't that on CNN?
posted by zombieflanders at 12:32 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


For some reason the CBC talkers are insisting that the chimney "belched" white smoke. They have backtracked and corrected other word choices at least once to emphasize the "belched". Freakout from Sun News in 5 ... 4 ... 3 ...
posted by maudlin at 12:32 PM on March 13, 2013


When you have the prayers memorized in your native language, it can actually be really difficult to say them properly in another, no matter how fluent you are. Those were the most common prayers of Catholicism, and they are probably more in muscle memory than something he really thinks about. So, the spanish-speaking part of his brain probably keeps trying to take over, and he has to force himself to keep going in Italian.

Infallible!
posted by Sys Rq at 12:33 PM on March 13, 2013


I am happy he is not European, interested that he is Jesuit, thrilled that he cares about social justice and poverty, delighted with his name choice, and utterly disappointed about his views on gay marriage AND adoption as well as abortion.

But what background does he have dealing with sexual assault within the Catholic Church? That is a huge issue. Does anyone know?
posted by bearwife at 12:33 PM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


Considering the sheer volume of Catholics in this world, and how much weight the Church's voice carries in many countries, some of us who are not Catholic would like to see the Church be less regressive and more tolerant of those it vocally does not approve.

Then who would you have had be pope instead?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:33 PM on March 13, 2013


I mean you guys know that the infallibility thing only applies is very small specific circumstances right?
posted by shakespeherian at 12:34 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


But what background does he have dealing with sexual assault within the Catholic Church? That is a huge issue. Does anyone know?

Given what "background" in dealing with sexual assault would likely mean, I'm hoping for none.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 12:35 PM on March 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


Cut/paste of the Guardian's translation of Pope Francis's speech:

He says the other cardinals went to the end of the world to choose a bishop.

He thanks the crowd for their welcome.

He says he wants to pray for Benedict XVI.

Let us pray altogether for him, Pope Francis says. He begins to recite the Lord's prayer.

And now let's start working together, walking together in the church of Rome, which presides over all the churches, the pope says.

Let us pray for each other and the entire world, he says. There is great brotherhood in the world.

He says he hopes the path they are about to take now will be fruitful for the evangelisation of this beautiful city.

He would like to bless the crowd, he says. But first he would like to ask a favour; he'd like to ask them to pray to God so God can bless him. The crowd love that.

They pray together in silence

The pope says he is going to bless the crowd and the entire world: all the men and women of goodwill

He blesses them in the name of the apostles and the saints. May God have mercy on them, he says

The father, the son, and the holy spirit descend on you and remain with you always – amen, the pope says

Brothers and sisters, I leave you, he says. Thank you so much for your welcome. I'll see you soon, he says. Good evening and have a good rest
posted by magstheaxe at 12:36 PM on March 13, 2013 [8 favorites]


Then who would you have had be pope instead?

Stephen Colbert.
posted by Drinky Die at 12:36 PM on March 13, 2013 [10 favorites]


I'm getting a bit of a Paul VI vibe -- anyone else?
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:37 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


His Wikipedia article has been locked to unregistered users. One last-minute edit I noticed: the reference to his distancing himself from liberation theology was deleted.
posted by audi alteram partem at 12:37 PM on March 13, 2013


I mean you guys know that the infallibility thing only applies is very small specific circumstances right?

The pope is always into the cool bands before they sell out and get all commercial, right?
posted by Area Man at 12:37 PM on March 13, 2013


Regarding "Francis I", though, are you sure?

No, actually I'm not, I'm just emphasizing that this is the first pope to take that name.

What did we call that guy who was pope for a month in 1978 at the time? Pope John Paul I, or just Pope John Paul? I was only seven then so my memory is more than a bit rusty.

Lack of a "I" would fit with other European monarchs. E.g., King John, not King John I.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 12:37 PM on March 13, 2013


In our ecclesiastical region there are priests who don’t baptize the children of single mothers because they weren’t conceived in the sanctity of marriage,” Bergoglio told his priests. “These are today’s hypocrites. Those who clericalize the Church. Those who separate the people of God from salvation. And this poor girl who, rather than returning the child to sender, had the courage to carry it into the world, must wander from parish to parish so that it’s baptized!”

Bergoglio compared this concept of Catholicism to the Pharisees of Christ’s time: people who congratulate themselves while condemning others.

posted by Drinky Die at 12:39 PM on March 13, 2013 [7 favorites]


He might've only become John Paul I after JPII.
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 12:39 PM on March 13, 2013


More black smoke. The Guardian is reporting that La Stampa is reporting that most of the votes have been going to Cardinals Scola, Bergoglio and Ouellet.

Turns out the Guardian does have good sources on this.
posted by drezdn at 12:39 PM on March 13, 2013


DevilsAdvocate: What did we call that guy who was pope for a month in 1978 at the time? Pope John Paul I, or just Pope John Paul? I was only seven then so my memory is more than a bit rusty.

Wikipedia says he was the first Pope to ever specifically include "the First" in his name.
posted by Rock Steady at 12:40 PM on March 13, 2013


Here, on Radio-Canada, they're calling him Francis I.
posted by MelanieL at 12:40 PM on March 13, 2013


I thought his speech was very humble and warm. (I tried to listen in Italian so I missed a few bits.) It was also theologically carefully thought out -- asking for the prayers and blessings of the people for him first, before he blessed them. Praying for Benedict. Emphasizing his role as Bishop of Rome. Those are all signals about what role he sees the office of the Papacy playing (probably more of a servant leadership model with the people, first-among-equals with the bishops).

That's about all the commentary I've got for now, I know so little about Bergoglio!
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 12:41 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Then who would you have had be pope instead?

Honestly? I would have liked to have seen Carlo Martini take it. He was pushing for reform on how the Church handles both homosexuality and gay marriage, as well as on priestly celibacy. But unfortunately he passed away last year.

I think Claudio Hummes would have also been an interesting choice. Certainly he would have been a good choice for the Church if they wanted to address their ongoing pedophilia scandal head on.
posted by zarq at 12:41 PM on March 13, 2013


On EWTN (Catholic Cable Channel) they are calling him just Pope Francis.
posted by SuzySmith at 12:42 PM on March 13, 2013


JP deliberately used the "I" in his papal name - he was John Paul I from the beginning. I'm seeing mixed reportage on whether this one is Francis or Francis I.
posted by Curious Artificer at 12:42 PM on March 13, 2013


But then when the next guy comes along, he'll be Francis: A New Hope, and everybody will act like it was there all along.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:42 PM on March 13, 2013 [11 favorites]


Drop the beat, Francis!.
posted by drezdn at 12:44 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


He was a couple days shy of his 33 birthday on his ordination, which seems older than most Priests I know. I'm curious of why he was that old.
posted by SuzySmith at 12:44 PM on March 13, 2013


Rides a bus to work. Lives in a simple apartment with another priest. Wears an ordinary priest's robe.

Yessir -- so far, I'm liking this guy.
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:44 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


I have to say, I really thought the Cardinals would go more conservative with their choice. I honestly believed that Benedict hung it up when he did so he'd still have the ability to try to influence the choice of his succesor and push the Church in an even more conservative direction. Glad to see I was wrong about that.
posted by magstheaxe at 12:45 PM on March 13, 2013


Empress, a name I didn't remember to mention was Christoph Schoenborn.
posted by zarq at 12:45 PM on March 13, 2013


But then when the next guy comes along, he'll be Francis: A New Hope, and everybody will act like it was there all along.

Ağca shot first!
posted by zombieflanders at 12:45 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


He was a couple days shy of his 33 birthday on his ordination, which seems older than most Priests I know. I'm curious of why he was that old.

Most Jesuits are ordained later than regular parish priests. He'd already been in the Society of Jesus for a decade at that point.
posted by ocherdraco at 12:45 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm curious of why he was that old.

It takes much longer to become a Jesuit, although I don't know if that was the reason.
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:46 PM on March 13, 2013


But then when the next guy comes along, he'll be Francis: A New Hope, and everybody will act like it was there all along.

I think you meant Francis IV: A New Pope.
posted by Authorized User at 12:46 PM on March 13, 2013 [18 favorites]


Honestly? I would have liked to have seen Carlo Martini take it. He was pushing for reform on how the Church handles both homosexuality and gay marriage, as well as on priestly celibacy. But unfortunately he passed away last year.

Then...that may be part of why he didn't get the papacy.

Look, I hear you, but when it comes to selecting a leader, it kind of does matter who the available choices are.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:47 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


New Pope Plus Point Nr1: He doesn't look like an evil Sith Lord.
posted by New England Cultist at 12:47 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


New Pope Plus Point Nr1: He doesn't look like an evil Sith Lord.

...wasn't Nazi youth...
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:48 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Latin American Mefites, represent! I imagine South America is delighted.
posted by theora55 at 12:48 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


The interesting thing will be what Francis will do with the Curia, which is widely seen as one of the major roadblocks to reform on the internal governance of the Church, if not stances on faith and morals. Usually, the staff of the Curia resign after the death/resignation of the old pope and are rehired by the new one, but that may not be the case this time.
posted by Cash4Lead at 12:49 PM on March 13, 2013


So, what do we know about his parents? It obviously doesn't matter in the slightest, but Wikipedia says they were Italians who emigrated to Argentina sometime before his birth in 1936, and that's sort of an interesting time to leave Italy for Argentina, is all.
posted by Sys Rq at 12:50 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


A basic timeline of Jesuit formation before ordination:

2 years: Novitiate
3 years: First Studies
1-3 years: Regency
3 years: Theology
then Ordination
posted by ocherdraco at 12:50 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Pope Benedict XVI retired due to old age. His replacement is older than the normal retirement age for bishops. He has had a lung removed.

Is it possible this election is based on a simple desire for many of the cardinals to have the opportunity to be Pope?
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 12:51 PM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


See more at Wikipedia, and at the website for the Jesuit community of the Western US.
posted by ocherdraco at 12:51 PM on March 13, 2013


Latin American Mefites, represent! I imagine South America is delighted.
posted by theora55 at 3:48 PM on March 13


I wish I had the money and the vacation time to board a plane to Buenos Aires. I imagine those folks are gonna party like it's 1999 tonight.
posted by magstheaxe at 12:52 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


Should've gone for Pope Sixth the Fourth.
posted by Flunkie at 12:52 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Anyone else notice that the new Pope is a doppelganger for Jonathan Pryce?
posted by leotrotsky at 12:53 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


I think a majority of Argentinians are of Italian heritage. 60%, per wikipedia.
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 12:53 PM on March 13, 2013


As the joke goes, Argentinians are Italians who speak Spanish and think they're French.
posted by Cash4Lead at 12:54 PM on March 13, 2013 [21 favorites]


Return of the Jesuits
posted by Kabanos at 12:54 PM on March 13, 2013


ocherdraco, thank you for the information!
posted by SuzySmith at 12:55 PM on March 13, 2013


You're welcome, SuzySmith!
posted by ocherdraco at 12:56 PM on March 13, 2013




Habemus papum sed non adhoc habemus conversium.
posted by The White Hat at 1:01 PM on March 13, 2013


It's also fantastic that he just asked the people to bless him before he blessed them.

Forgive my excitement, but I seriously teared up with that. Beautiful gesture.
posted by CrazyLemonade at 1:02 PM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


Empress, yes, and the Church hierarchy has been passing over and not promoting any of the more liberal priests who showed any sign of straying from conservative doctrine for at least a decade now. Suppressing change. So when the time comes to choose a new Pope, the available candidate pool is restricted.
posted by zarq at 1:02 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]


I left the Catholic church years ago, but I always hope for the best for it. Hoping (and yes, praying) that Francis does well, and is a force of good.
posted by kimberussell at 1:04 PM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


JP deliberately used the "I" in his papal name - he was John Paul I from the beginning.

I wonder if this is because he was also the first pope to take two names, i.e., to clarify that he wasn't Pope John XXIV Paul VII.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 1:04 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


According to CNN, he dropped out of bishophood due to age. Um. Not the most confidence inspiring choice following a papal resignation attributed to age.

Actually, the whole bio is less than inspiring and at odds with a lot of what's been said about Francis being moderate:

Until last year, Bergoglio was the archbishop of Buenos Aires before stepping down because of his age. He is 76. Bergoglio is considered a straight-shooter who calls things as he sees them, and a follower of the church's most conservative wing. He has clashed with the government of President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner over his opposition to gay marriage and free distribution of contraceptives.
posted by sonika at 1:06 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm amazed that anyone thinks this guy is a good choice, but I guess there was a conclave full of bad choices.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:07 PM on March 13, 2013




Not the most confidence inspiring choice following a papal resignation attributed to age.

It's a conspiracy to normalize resignation in the papacy! The first time we're all like WHA BUH I DON'T EVEN but then they set up another oldster and he decides to walk off the job a few years later and we're all OH MAN TWO IN A ROW and then when the third oldster does it it's just like FINE WE GET IT and the one after that will be a 47-year-old with good hair who'll retire after three years to take a position at a Palo Alto thinktank.
posted by cortex at 1:11 PM on March 13, 2013 [13 favorites]


USA Today:
Couldn't prevent Argentina from becoming the first Latin American country to legalize same-sex marriage or stop its president, Cristina Fernandez, from promoting free contraception and artificial insemination. When Bergoglio argued that gay adoptions discriminate against children, Fernandez compared his tone to "medieval times and the Inquisition.

... Critics accuse him of failing to stand up publicly against the country's military dictatorship from 1976-1983, when victims and their relatives often brought first-hand accounts of torture, death and kidnappings."
posted by ericb at 1:14 PM on March 13, 2013


Drop the beat, Francis!

Damnit, I was just about to link that. That's seriously what comes to mind whenever I hear the name Francis these days.
posted by kmz at 1:14 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


via my friend, Jeff Galloway: 12,000 runners in Sunday’s Rome Marathon don’t know when the race will start. Hundreds of thousands have been gathering daily around the Vatican near the race route, and since the Pope has now been elected, there will be hundreds of thousands more. Runners have been told that the start could be any time between 9am and 4pm. I will keep you posted.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:14 PM on March 13, 2013


Bergoglio called gay marriage "the destructive attempt to end God's plan."
Bergoglio began “I write these lines to each of you who are in the four monasteries of Buenos Aires. The people of Argentina will face in the coming weeks, a situation whose outcome may seriously injure the family. This is the bill on marriage for same sex. “

Then he added, “At stake are the lives of many children who are discriminated against in advance by depriving them of human growth that God wanted to given with a father and a mother. At stake is a total rejection of the law of God, engraved in our hearts as well”.

The Archbishop stated flatly “we are not naive: it is not just a political struggle, it is a destructive attempt to God’s plan. It is not just a bill (this is only the instrument) but a ‘move’ from the Father of Lies that seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God.”
GLAAD President Herndon Graddick on election of New Pope:
"For decades the Catholic hierarchy has been in need of desperate reform. In his life, Jesus condemned gays zero times. In Pope Benedict's short time in the papacy, he made a priority of condemning gay people routinely. This, in spite of the fact, that the Catholic hierarchy had been in collusion to cover up the widespread abuse of children within its care. We hope this Pope will trade in his red shoes for a pair of sandals and spend a lot less time condemning and a lot more time foot-washing."*
posted by ericb at 1:17 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


Critics accuse him of failing to stand up publicly against the country's military dictatorship from 1976-1983, when victims and their relatives often brought first-hand accounts of torture, death and kidnappings.

There seem to be conflicting accounts about what he did and did not do during the Dirty War:
At least two cases directly involved Bergoglio. One examined the torture of two of his Jesuit priests – Orlando Yorio and Francisco Jalics – who were kidnapped in 1976 from the slums where they advocated liberation theology. Yorio accused Bergoglio of effectively handing them over to the death squads by declining to tell the regime that he endorsed their work. Jalics refused to discuss it after moving into seclusion in a German monastery.

Both men were freed after Bergoglio took extraordinary, behind-the-scenes action to save them – including persuading dictator Jorge Videla's family priest to call in sick so that he could say Mass in the junta leader's home, where he privately appealed for mercy. His intervention likely saved their lives, but Bergoglio never shared the details until Rubin interviewed him for the 2010 biography.

Bergoglio – who ran Argentina's Jesuit order during the dictatorship – told Rubin that he regularly hid people on church property during the dictatorship, and once gave his identity papers to a man with similar features, enabling him to escape across the border. But all this was done in secret, at a time when church leaders publicly endorsed the junta and called on Catholics to restore their "love for country" despite the terror in the streets.

Rubin said failing to challenge the dictators was simply pragmatic at a time when so many people were getting killed, and attributed Bergoglio's later reluctance to share his side of the story as a reflection of his humility.

But Bregman said Bergoglio's own statements proved church officials knew from early on that the junta was torturing and killing its citizens, and yet publicly endorsed the dictators. "The dictatorship could not have operated this way without this key support," she said.
posted by ocherdraco at 1:20 PM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


Erich, does he have any background at all in confronting child sexual abuse within the Church?
posted by bearwife at 1:21 PM on March 13, 2013


Bergoglio hid Argentine political prisoners from a Human Rights group at his holiday house.

Well, figures they would want someone experienced in covering up human rights abuses. But, hey, he rode the bus.
posted by dry white toast at 1:22 PM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]



I'm getting a bit of a Paul VI vibe -- anyone else?


Yes. Francis is heavier, but he looks a bit like Paul. It's the facial expression.
posted by jgirl at 1:34 PM on March 13, 2013




So cool that they picked a gay black female to be pope.
posted by item at 1:43 PM on March 13, 2013 [6 favorites]


Wait.
posted by item at 1:43 PM on March 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


Bergoglio hid Argentine political prisoners from a Human Rights group at his holiday house.

That is not what the book referred in that article says though, the holiday house is for the use of the archbishop of Buenos Aires and Bergoglio was not archbishop at that time.

Of course that does not mean that he did not collude with the junta, just that the Guardian journalist seems to have gotten these specific claims confused.
posted by Authorized User at 1:45 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


All those of you wondering if he chose Francis as a sign of humility or emphasis on simplicity, I am pretty sure it is more likely a Francis Xavier Jesuit thing.
posted by Megami at 1:49 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


A Jesuit?! *hissssssss*
posted by A Bad Catholic at 1:57 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Statement from President Obama on election of Pope Francis I:
"On behalf of the American people, Michelle and I offer our warm wishes to His Holiness Pope Francis as he ascends to the Chair of Saint Peter and begins his papacy. As a champion of the poor and the most vulnerable among us, he carries forth the message of love and compassion that has inspired the world for more than two thousand years—that in each other we see the face of God. As the first pope from the Americas, his selection also speaks to the strength and vitality of a region that is increasingly shaping our world, and alongside millions of Hispanic Americans, those of us in the United States share the joy of this historic day. Just as I appreciated our work with Pope Benedict XVI, I look forward to working with His Holiness to advance peace, security and dignity for our fellow human beings, regardless of their faith. We join with people around the world in offering our prayers for the Holy Father as he begins the sacred work of leading the Catholic Church in our modern world."
posted by ericb at 2:01 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


A Jesuit?! *hissssssss*
posted by A Bad Catholic at 4:57 PM


Eponysterical!
posted by magstheaxe at 2:01 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Or St. Francis de Sales, another Jesuit.
posted by Chrysostom at 2:03 PM on March 13, 2013


Did anyone seriously think we were going to get a Pope who'd just throw out the Church's stance on gays and gay rights?

Gay-bashing is now properly seen in the same league as racism. The Catholic Church gets a pass when they recognize their hypocrisy and end their crusade against free will, and against equality for all people, and when they begin to defend the right of a woman (or a man) to have access to contraception without their creepy version of God getting in between our covers.

They get a pass when they deserve it, and that's when their bigotry ends. Not a fucking moment sooner.
posted by tripping daisy at 2:03 PM on March 13, 2013 [8 favorites]


Has he shit in the woods yet?
posted by klangklangston at 2:04 PM on March 13, 2013


Good point Chrysostom.
posted by Megami at 2:06 PM on March 13, 2013


Well, that's what I get for only reading the last 50 or so comments. MAKE SAME JOKE NOW!
posted by klangklangston at 2:07 PM on March 13, 2013


MeFi's own rcade, his popesquatting days are over. :(
posted by maggieb at 2:07 PM on March 13, 2013


The Vatican is saying it's Assisi, though I find it hard to believe.
posted by gerryblog at 2:17 PM on March 13, 2013


tripping daisy, I didn't ask "Why aren't you giving these guys a pass?" I asked if anyone seriously thought we'd get a Pope who would just wave his hand and undo the Church's current stance on gay rights?


I'm noy saying they deserve a pass for their stance on these things. But the Cardinals are well-known to be conservative. Getting frustrated that they didn't elect such a pope is like getting frustrated that they didn't elect an atheist, or item's Afro-lesbian.
posted by magstheaxe at 2:22 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


leotrotsky: "So, any thoughts on what Francis implies as a papal moniker?"

The guy's a Jesuit. Here in St. Louis, it's a very Jesuit town, and there are a *lot* of guys with the otherwise-inscrutable middle initials, "F.X." So it was that, or Pope Iggy.
posted by notsnot at 2:29 PM on March 13, 2013


Well, that's what I get for only reading the last 50 or so comments. MAKE SAME JOKE NOW!

I think it is a myth that popes shit in the woods. I have some inside sources that say they've seen the pope shit in a stream while catching salmon.
posted by perhapses at 2:30 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


Charles Pierce: Meet Your New Pope
posted by homunculus at 2:33 PM on March 13, 2013


Doing a Google search that looked for info on the new Pope from before he was announced netted me this.

Apparently, an Argentine priest molested a 13-year-old in the early '90s. The priest then left/fled/was sent by the Church to the U.S.

The victim sued the Church, who settled for $40K, but there was a confidentiality clause the victim objected to... it turns out that they complained to a secretary of Bishop Jorge Bergoglio, only to be completely stonewalled by the Church.
posted by markkraft at 2:36 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]




Asking someone to stop being a bigot is reasonable regardless of how bigoted they are, or how long they've been bigots, or even if they talk to gay people or contraceptive users sometimes. The weaseling words mirror the same pathetic rationale that excused racism, and it's not okay. It won't ever be okay.

So, I hope the new Pope does well and all. But until he denounces decades upon decades of bigotry, intolerance, and child abuse, he's a bigot and a hypocrite and people should let him know that he's a bigot and a hypocrite, and I'll stop calling him a bigot and hypocrite when he stops being one.

I don't care if they elect an atheist, or an Afro-lesbian. It's not my church. That would be nice since perhaps an atheist or an Afro-lesbian would have the basic human decency to stop their systematic bigotry and systematic protection of child abusers, but apparently there are more important things on the minds of that "enclave of hysterical virgins." They want to keep their little golden scepters or their big churches or maybe just their weird sex parties that are apparently all the rage behind closed doors.

In any case, if Catholics want to follow a group of self-professed celibates in robes who believe God tells them how everyone else should behave in the privacy of their own bedrooms, they're welcome to it. What I'm saying is that before they get that far into preaching goodness, they should stop being bigots and start protecting children who attend their church from mentally ill sexual predators. I'll continue to point out the truth every time it comes up, and continue to point out that electing yet another gay-bashing, anti-contraceptive Pope who puts the pretended reverence of his religious tribe ahead of common human decency is not the way I would improve my organization's image in the 21st Century.
posted by tripping daisy at 2:45 PM on March 13, 2013 [7 favorites]


76 years old? Man, the Cards have got to start moving rookies up from the minor leagues faster.
posted by octobersurprise at 2:52 PM on March 13, 2013 [16 favorites]


So that's it? The reason Pope Hitler Youth resigned is swept under the rug just like that?
posted by item at 3:17 PM on March 13, 2013


Ooh look a shiny new pope! What was the question again?
posted by item at 3:25 PM on March 13, 2013


From Argentina, eh?
Like they aren't blessed enough with Messi already?
posted by sour cream at 3:27 PM on March 13, 2013


URGENT
posted by EndsOfInvention at 3:27 PM on March 13, 2013


Just lt a reminder, please don't use mental illness as an attack or insult.
posted by shakespeherian at 3:34 PM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


An AP story has Bergoglio’s defense, so to speak, to the charges that have been swirling about his relationship and possible collaboration with the Argentinian dictatorship.
posted by gerryblog at 3:36 PM on March 13, 2013


Note to Francis: not all Benedicts who resign as Pope stay resigned.
posted by mazola at 3:40 PM on March 13, 2013


Isn't this guy now the guy in charge of appointing (promoting?) people to the College of Cardinals, aka the pool that votes on who becomes his successor?

Curious to see who ends up in there. As a Jesuit, he seems likely to appoint more Jesuits, typically the more liberal arm. Could be a more positive turning point for the Church than it seems.

(also could be more of the same, but I'm optimistic)
posted by troika at 3:43 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


A 76 year old dude who has never been known to have a romantic relationship with a woman, spends his days hanging out with single men and is always hating on the gays as wicked sinners tempted by the devil. Is that the gaydar pinging or just my tinnitus?
posted by humanfont at 3:45 PM on March 13, 2013


So that's it? The reason Pope Hitler Youth resigned is swept under the rug just like that?
Yeah, it's a real shame. Now how will be able to tell serious critics of the Pope from smartarses?
posted by Jehan at 3:49 PM on March 13, 2013 [3 favorites]


Since the head of the Jesuits is often referred to as the "Black Pope," that means that Pope Francis = Black Pope Francis = Black Francis = Frank Black and the Catholics.
posted by thecaddy at 4:34 PM on March 13, 2013 [17 favorites]


I GOT ME A MITRE
I WANT YOU TO KNOW
SLICIN' UP WAFERS
I WANT YOU TO KNOW

posted by cortex at 4:38 PM on March 13, 2013 [15 favorites]


Just lt a reminder, please don't use mental illness as an attack or insult.

Sorry, I didn't mean to imply that. I'm simply saying that they need to be in therapy, not thrown into an environment where more people are exploited. Instead of showing some sort of accountability, admitting the problem, and then helping everyone who's been harmed, the Catholic Church continues to act is if pretending there is not problem is the better moral choice.
posted by tripping daisy at 4:41 PM on March 13, 2013


I've done more digging. Here are more of the details on the new Pope's involvement in covering up a major child sexual abuse case.

From the August 15, 2012 article Bishop Poli Linked to "Network of Silence" by La Arena, the newspaper with the largest circulation in the Pampas, the northern region of Argentina, it relates an interview with Sebastián Quattromo, who, when he was 13 years old, was sexually molested and abused along with another boy by Fernando Enrique Picciochi, a Catholic Catechist at the Marianist College.

Turns out that after being publicly accused, Fernando Enrique Picciochi fled to the United States. The Church then settled a civil suit against them, with some kind of non-disclosure agreement... but for years, the Marianist College, the local bishopric in the Pampas, and Archbishop (now Pope) formed a "Network of Silence" with the intent of preventing Fernando Picciochi from coming to justice.

Thankfully, a case was able to come forward, despite the Church's interference, and, after a manhunt, the U.S. finally deported the pedophile back to Argentina in 2010. He was convicted to twelve years in prison in late September last year.

At the time of his detention, he was residing somewhere in California, for quite awhile. I haven't been able to determine exactly where, nor do I know the details on how he successfully fled to the United States, and whether the Church was involved in that somehow. Could he have had other victims here, I wonder?!

All this talk about the Pope maybe ratting out a few members of the clergy? That seems to be largely unproven. But here is something WE KNOW HAPPENED. A victim went to the Catholic school they were molested at... and they were stonewalled. They went to their local Bishop... and they were stonewalled. They went to their Archbishop... and they were stonewalled. And a pedophile roamed free throughout the U.S. because of it. It's all in court records, fer crissakes... and it resulted in a conviction in a court of law. But there's no news of it anywhere, really.

(... presumably because most American reporters are lazy copycats who can't research worth a damn, and this kind of stuff happened so many times that it all starts to sound like old news?!)
posted by markkraft at 4:58 PM on March 13, 2013 [7 favorites]




Charlie Brooker on the Pope's resignation.

"He regenerates like Doctor Who, and you can tell when it's happened because all this white smoke goes off, and he comes out with a new head on."

posted by markkraft at 5:13 PM on March 13, 2013 [12 favorites]


Did anyone seriously think we were going to get a Pope who'd just throw out the Church's stance on gays and gay rights?

Well, at least we know that he is out of step with the majority of American Catholics.

Catholics Support Gay Marriage More than Americans as a Whole -- "A new poll from Quinnipiac University finds the majority of American Catholics support marriage equality."
posted by ericb at 5:34 PM on March 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


The Vatican has been out of step with American Catholics for a very, very long time now. Even abortion isn't the guaranteed winner it used to be, to the apparently continual surprise and dissapointment of the GOP and/or religious right.
posted by zombieflanders at 5:43 PM on March 13, 2013 [5 favorites]


Well, at least we know that he is out of step with the majority of American Catholics.....

Which is great and dog hopes that's how the rest of the country/world begins to turn, but in a sense that is also very, very egotistically American-centralism. American Catholics are not the majority in the Church and are out of step with the majority on this (important) issue. As much as we would hope that the Catholic Church would reverse it's stance, there is little to indicate it will for a long long time, and it just isn't taking what American Catholics think about it with any amount of seriousness. Nor do they have to.

So, we can rail against it, but it just isn't changing. There would be (and perhaps should be) a schism before the Church changes it's stance on this.
posted by edgeways at 5:46 PM on March 13, 2013 [4 favorites]


Latin American Catholics are also warming to the freedom to marry.
posted by klangklangston at 6:07 PM on March 13, 2013


The Malachy bit: “Petrus Romanus,” or “Peter the Roman,” whose reign ends with the destruction of Rome and the judgment of Christ...

Does anyone else read that as "to verb the penis to a person of a particular background?" The church rape and cover-up scandal?
posted by porpoise at 9:59 PM on March 13, 2013 [1 favorite]


So the new pope has followed the exact same procedure for dealing with pedophile priests as every other bishop, archibishop and cardinal? And yet there are Catholics who continue to believe the protection of rapist priests is just the problem of a few bad apples and not a systemised policy.

And if he did focus on poverty, what good would that do? I'm not being snarky here, in spite of my dislike of the Catholic Church's heirarchy. Do Popes still have the kind of influence that can bring about societal change anymore?
posted by harriet vane at 10:59 PM on March 13, 2013


Harriet Vane that is a great point about poverty. I was saying to my husband the other day that I really don't get why this is such a big story - plenty of people are saying 'that's so Euro-centric, there are millions of Catholics in Africa and South American who are quite traditional and still go to church' but my point is still - so? The selection of the head of the UN,or the WHO, or UNICEF or various other organisations probably have a lot more influence on those people's lives yet we don't see much written about them or their selection, or what their selection means for other people. Yes there is pomp, yes it is interesting that it has taken this long to pick a Jesuit, but really what difference will it make?
posted by Megami at 12:37 AM on March 14, 2013


. Do Popes still have the kind of influence that can bring about societal change anymore?

He could conceivably refocus Catholic Churches to spend more time and effort tending to and lifting up the poor in their communities -- something churches historically have done well -- and less time vilifying and attacking non-Catholics for things that are not, should not and never have been their business in the first place. Such as lobbying against secular laws that affect non-Catholics, like abortion rights, civil rights for women and the GLBT community, religious displays on public property, science education in public schools, etc.
posted by zarq at 5:50 AM on March 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


The Pope is also in the position of focusing and setting the priorities for an organization that, on the most base level, spends a ton of money. It's pretty impossible to get actual numbers, but the Economist estimated that the American Catholic Church alone spent 171 billion dollars in 2010. The Economist describes 4.7 billion of that as charity(Catholics would and did argue with that based on how you see the expenses labeled "health care" and "education"), but that means that the American Catholic Church spends on charity at least as much as the entire budget of the WHO.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 6:01 AM on March 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


He could conceivably refocus Catholic Churches to spend (...) less time vilifying and attacking non-Catholics
He seems to have named himself after a guy who went around India calling Hindus devil worshippers.
posted by Flunkie at 6:08 AM on March 14, 2013


A number of Churches in NYC run soup kitchens for the poor on the weekends. The best organized that I know of is at St. John the Divine. Multiple shifts serve hot meals to hundreds of people -- to anyone in need. I volunteered there for years at least once or twice a month. Food is donated, brought by volunteers or bought by the Church, then prepared and served on site, for free.

Soup kitchens. Blood drives. Volunteer work. Drug and alcohol rehab program sponsorships. Clothing and item donations. This is the sort of work that Churches can do and often does fantastically well. That they used to be known for. Urging their congregations and communities to support one other, then leading by example.

They're already agents of social change. Imagine what they could do if they focused on it full time en masse.
posted by zarq at 6:13 AM on March 14, 2013 [5 favorites]


The best organized that I know of is at St. John the Divine.

This is not a Roman Catholic church.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:44 AM on March 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


On the radio this morning, a papal commentator said this pope has a benefit because as an outsider "he doesn't know where the bodies are buried".

Ummmmmmmm awwwwkwaarrrrdddd.
posted by Theta States at 6:46 AM on March 14, 2013


The Malachy bit: “Petrus Romanus,” or “Peter the Roman,” whose reign ends with the destruction of Rome and the judgment of Christ...

Does anyone else read that as "to verb the penis to a person of a particular background?"


....Not only am I not, I'm intensely curious as to how you did.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:55 AM on March 14, 2013 [4 favorites]


On the radio this morning, a papal commentator said this pope has a benefit because as an outsider "he doesn't know where the bodies are buried".

In St. Peter's at least, it shouldn't be hard to figure out; there are literal bodies everywhere.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 7:00 AM on March 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Based on the focus of the press I'm surprised his papal name is not Pope Bus Rider I (quick, grab the Twitter account).

Everything else aside, he could do a lot of good for the earth itself just by stressing some of his (reported) simple living principles. Write up a short book with some basic ideas (you don't need that big of a house, really; take the bus once in a while or maybe ride a bike; simple economical meals you can make at home (maybe a separate cookbook focusing on slow food principles); repair/reuse some things instead of tossing them away and buying new; etc.). Have it available free in the back of the churches where they have other such books and pamphlets available. Produce kits that help churches hold parish meetings on these sort of topics or encourage them to partner with existing local organisations.

Granted, now that he lives in the Vatican it's going to seem a bit less sincere. But even there he can do things along the lines of what the Obamas have done at the White House - build gardens that supply food for the kitchen, install solar panels or windmills, etc.
posted by mikepop at 7:09 AM on March 14, 2013


ROU_Xenophobe: " This is not a Roman Catholic church."

!

You're right! I forgot. They're Anglican/Episcopalian.
posted by zarq at 7:18 AM on March 14, 2013




Megami: "All those of you wondering if he chose Francis as a sign of humility or emphasis on simplicity, I am pretty sure it is more likely a Francis Xavier Jesuit thing."

The Week: 6 key things everyone should know about Pope Francis:

1. He will be Pope Francis, not Francis I
2. It's a big deal for a Jesuit to take the name Francis:
Lombardi also said that Francis chose his name to honor St. Francis of Assisi, the mystical 13th-century founder of the Franciscan order, rather than St. Francis Xavier, one of the first members of the new pope's own Jesuit order. This is remarkable because the Franciscans and the Jesuits have a long, sometimes bitter rivalry. (Google "Jesuit jokes" for a flavor of the antagonism.)

"By choosing the name of the founder of his community's traditional rivals," says Rocco Palmo at Whispers in the Loggia, Pope Francis "has signaled three things: His desire to be a force of unity in a polarized fold, a heart for the poor, and his intent to 'repair God's house, which has fallen into ruin'... that is, to rebuild the church" — a call St. Francis of Assisi heard while praying before a crucifix.

3. He only has one lung
4. He holds degrees in chemistry, philosophy, and theology
5. He worked as a bouncer at a bar
6. He had a girlfriend once, and liked to tango
posted by zarq at 7:40 AM on March 14, 2013 [11 favorites]


He holds degrees in chemistry, philosophy, and theology

Pope Heisenberg?

via Cranston's Twitter feed, no less
posted by zombieflanders at 7:48 AM on March 14, 2013


One day a local pastor was visiting the home of some parishioners who had a teenage son. The parents were worried about what career their son would choose, so the pastor said he had a simple test that could predict what would become of him.

He would put three objects on a table and let the young man choose whichever one he wanted to have: a Bible, a wallet, and a bottle of scotch. If the boy chose the Bible, he would probably become a priest; if he chose the wallet, he'd be a banker; and if he chose the bottle, he'd become a worthless bum.

So the parents called their son into the room, and the pastor told him he could have whichever object he wished. When the boy promptly picked up all three, the pastor cried out, "Heaven forbid! He's going to be a Jesuit!"

posted by Blasdelb at 8:26 AM on March 14, 2013 [18 favorites]


"The Benedictans, Franciscans, Dominicans, and Jesuits were having a big meeting that went well into the middle of the night. Suddenly all the lights went out in the meeting room. The Benedictans immediately started chanting Psalms glorifying God, the Franciscans took out their guitars and sang songs praising all creation, and the Dominicans began preaching about the metaphysics of light and darkness; meanwhile the Jesuits went to the basement, found the fuse box, and reset the breaker."
posted by Blasdelb at 8:27 AM on March 14, 2013 [19 favorites]


A man has three sons who entered three different religious orders: the oldest became a Dominican, the second a Franciscan, and the youngest a Jesuit. On his deathbed, the father tells his sons, "I know you all have vows of poverty, but as a sign of your love for me, I want each of you to place one thousand dollars into my casket to be buried with me."

On the day of the funeral, the Dominican son steps up, places $1000 in the casket, and says, "This seems like a waste of money, since you can't take it with you, Dad. But with the special permission of my superiors, I'm doing as you requested, as a sign of my love."

Next, the Franciscan son approaches the casket and says, "You know I love you, Dad, but the needs of the poor are so great, I just can't let $1000 be buried with you. I hope you understand, now that you are in heaven. Please forgive me."

Finally, the Jesuit son comes forward and says to his brother, "Don't worry, Frank. I'll pay your share." Then he reaches into the casket, takes the cash left by his eldest brother, and puts in a check for $3000.

posted by Blasdelb at 8:31 AM on March 14, 2013 [30 favorites]


I can't believe they went with a Latino Cardinal and passed over Carlos Beltran.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 8:50 AM on March 14, 2013 [1 favorite]




A Jesuit and a Franciscan were involved in a car accident. Hurriedly they got out to make sure the other person was OK, each insisting that it was probably his own fault. Then the Jesuit, very concerned for his fellow religious, said, "You look very badly shaken up. You could probably use a stiff drink." At that he produced a flask, and the Franciscan, who was indeed a bit shaken up, took it gratefully.

"One more and I'm sure you'll be feeling fine," the Jesuit said, and the Franciscan took another. Then the Jesuit took the flask and put it safely away. "You look a bit shaken up yourself," the Franciscan said. "Are you sure you don't want to take a bit?"

The Jesuit replied, "Oh, I certainly will; but I think I'll wait until after the police arrive."

posted by Blasdelb at 9:03 AM on March 14, 2013 [15 favorites]


leotrotsky: Anyone else notice that the new Pope is a doppelganger for Jonathan Pryce?

The new Pope is simultaneously from Argentina and Brazil.
posted by jason_steakums at 9:45 AM on March 14, 2013 [4 favorites]


I had no idea there were Jesuit jokes (other than about complex argumentation). These are great!

(One long-forgotten college class taught me the excellent insult "Jesuitical casuistry."
posted by Measured Out my Life in Coffeespoons at 10:27 AM on March 14, 2013 [2 favorites]




NO TOUCHING!
posted by Sys Rq at 12:14 PM on March 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


"He regenerates like Doctor Who, and you can tell when it's happened because all this white smoke goes off, and he comes out with a new head on."

Well, after all, Jesus was a shape-shifter.
posted by homunculus at 1:50 PM on March 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


A Jesuit, a Dominican, and a Franciscan were walking along an old road, debating the greatness of their orders. Suddenly, an apparition of the Holy Family appeared in front of them, with Jesus in a manger and Mary and Joseph praying over him.

The Franciscan fell on his face, overcome with awe at the sight of God born in such poverty.
The Dominican fell to his knees, adoring the beautiful reflection of the Trinity and the Holy Family.
The Jesuit walked up to Joseph, put his arm around his shoulder, and said, "So, have you thought about where to send the boy to school?"

posted by Blasdelb at 3:00 PM on March 14, 2013 [23 favorites]


A Franciscan, a Benedictine, a Dominican and an Jesuit are playing a round of golf. By about the 4th hole they are all getting a little perturbed at the speed of the foursome in front of them - very slow. By the seventh hole they are all beyond perturbed and needing to pray for patience. At the eight tee, the Franciscan announces that he is going to speak to them at the turn and politely ask them to hurry the hell up. The other three agree and decide to present a unified front.

As they approach the clubhouse after the ninth hole, they notice there is a fifth person with the group in front of them. The Franciscan approaches this person, with the other three priest in tow, to inquire about the reason for the slow play. Just then he notices this person is assisting the foursome in getting their refreshments at the turn, because the members of the slow foursome are all blind.

The Franciscan returns to the clergy foursome and informs them that the golfers in front of them are all blind, with a good deal of remorse. He suggests that they buy the group lunch. The Benedictine asks his priestly partners to join him in a prayer requesting forgiveness for their lack of charity. The Dominican tells all the groups at the turn what a wondrous thing this is, that these four sight-impaired men are able to enjoy God's creation on the golf course because of the technological advances made possible by God's gift of science. The Jesuit pauses to think for a moment . . .

turns to his colleagues and asks . . .

Why can't they play at night?

posted by Blasdelb at 3:03 PM on March 14, 2013 [17 favorites]




leotrotsky: "Anyone else notice that the new Pope is a doppelganger for Jonathan Pryce?"

My favorite papal-related joke on Facebook yesterday was one expressing bewilderment at the presence of an Argentinian on a balcony who wasn't singing.
posted by Dr. Zira at 4:03 PM on March 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


What is similar about the Jesuit and Dominican Orders?
Well, they were both founded by Spaniards, St. Dominic for the Dominicans, and St. Ignatius of Loyola for the Jesuits.
They were also both founded to combat heresy: the Dominicans to fight the Albigensians, and the Jesuits to fight the Protestants.

What is different about the Jesuit and Dominican Orders?
Well, have you met any Albigensians lately?

posted by Rustic Etruscan at 5:48 PM on March 14, 2013 [11 favorites]


The Jesuit turns to the Dominican.
"That's because we didn't use swords."
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:21 PM on March 14, 2013 [5 favorites]


The Jesuit turns to the Dominican.
"That's because we didn't use swords."
posted by the man of twists and turns at 21:21 on March 14 [1 favorite +] [!]


Eponysterical?
posted by palbo at 10:52 PM on March 14, 2013


Since the head of the Jesuits is often referred to as the "Black Pope," that means that Pope Francis = Black Pope Francis = Black Francis = Frank Black and the Catholics.

As the Jesuits are the most learned order of the Catholic Church I suspect he'll be a Sage Francis.
posted by Charlemagne In Sweatpants at 12:46 AM on March 15, 2013 [3 favorites]


A Benedictine goes to a barber to get a hair cut. When the haircut is done he asks the barber how much he owes him, but the barber replies "oh no, I don't charge clergy." The next morning the barber comes into work and finds twelve bottles of good red wine at the doorstep. A Franciscan goes to the same barber and when the haircut is finished asks how much he owes, and the barber says "oh no, I don't charge clergy". The next morning the barber comes in to work and finds twelve loaves of fresh baked bread on his doorstep. When a Trappist stops by and is also told "oh no, I don't charge clergy" after his haircut, a case of twelve delicious beers is similarly found the next morning.

A Jesuit goes to the same barber, and again when the haircut is finished asks the barber how much he owes. Again, the barber replies, "oh no, I don't charge clergy." The next morning the barber comes in to work and finds twelve Jesuits at his doorstep.

posted by Blasdelb at 3:29 AM on March 15, 2013 [14 favorites]




A Jesuit, a Franciscan, and a Dominican dying and going to heaven. They are ushered into God's throne room, where God is seated on an immense, diamond-encrusted gold chair. God says to the Dominican, "Son of St. Dominic, what do you believe?" The Dominican answers, "I believe in God the Father, Creator of heaven and earth." God asks the Franciscan, "Son of St. Francis, what do you believe?" The Franciscan says, "I believe in your son, Jesus, who came to work with the poor." Finally God turns to the Jesuit and from his great throne asks, "Son of St. Ignatius, what do you believe?" The Jesuit says, "I believe... you're in my seat!"
posted by Blasdelb at 3:35 AM on March 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


OOO, A new one!

Conclave locates Jesuit faithful to the Pope.
posted by Blasdelb at 3:36 AM on March 15, 2013 [7 favorites]


A Franciscan and a Jesuit were friends. They were both smokers who found it difficult to pray for a long period of time without having a cigarette. They decided to go to their superiors and ask permission to smoke.

When they met again, the Franciscan was downcast. “I asked my superior if I could smoke while I pray and he said ‘no,’” he said.

The Jesuit smiled. “I asked I could pray while I smoke. He said ‘of course.’”

posted by Blasdelb at 3:38 AM on March 15, 2013 [6 favorites]


You're right! I forgot. They're Anglican/Episcopalian

Really, St. John the Divine is barely even Episcopalian. It's barely even a church in the traditional sense (of a bunch of righteous assholes condemning all who believe differently). It's more like a cathedral version of PBS.
posted by spitbull at 3:56 AM on March 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


Barely even Episcopalian? They are right in the mainstream of The Episcopal Church.
posted by humanfont at 4:32 AM on March 15, 2013 [3 favorites]


So when the time comes to choose a new Pope, the available candidate pool is restricted.

The papacy is not restricted to the Cardinals. They just elect the pope; it doesn't have to be one of them. They can pick any Catholic male they want.
posted by gjc at 4:36 AM on March 15, 2013


For all your Jesuit conspiracy theories.
The Jesuits have always sought to be the power behind the throne, the man behind the curtain. It is interesting that Bergoglio turned down the papacy at the last conclave as he was part of the Ratzinger wing.
Verbitsky the new pope's major critic who published the expose of nefarious deeds during the dictadura, thinks the new Argentine pope could use the seductive Christian rhetoric of solidarity with the poor to undermine the populist government of Argentina and restore the exploiters to power. See also An argentine and a Jesuit.
The Jesuits have a long and colorful history of involvement in politics.
posted by adamvasco at 5:29 AM on March 15, 2013


"It's barely even a church in the traditional sense (of a bunch of righteous assholes condemning all who believe differently)."

"It's more like a cathedral version of PBS."

Exactly, they're Episcopalians!
posted by Blasdelb at 5:49 AM on March 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


A Dominican, a Franciscan, and a Jesuit were in the same hospice, and all were near death. One evening, the Angel of Death appeared before them and informed them that it was their time and that each could have a final request before accompanying him from this world. The Dominican asked to gaze upon the face of his Savior. In an instant, the face of Christ appeared before him. He was satisfied and felt he could die with no regrets. The Franciscan asked to touch the wounds in the hands and feet of Jesus before he died; Christ appeared and invited him, like Thomas, to examine his wounds. The dying priest touched Christ’s hands and feet and wept with joy, peace, and contentment. Finally, the Angel of Death asked the Jesuit for his final request. Without hesitation the Jesuit replied, “I’d like a second opinion.”
posted by Blasdelb at 5:51 AM on March 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


There was a priests' retreat at some retreat house and during the course of it the retreat master asked them to break up into groups of three. They were then to share their deepest darkest secrets, things they had never shared with anyone else ever.

The Dominican priest after much hemming and hawing said that he was an alcoholic. He had been so ashamed to tell anyone before. He drank all the time and just couldn't kick the problem. He was so glad that in the sacredness of this small group he could share this and now he felt so good, so free.

The Franciscan priest hesitated, but finally said he thought he could trust the other two and that his problem was gambling. He had been unable to control his urge to go to bet way beyond his means. He was also very ashamed of his habit and was so grateful that he could finally share it in such a context with his fellow priest.

It was the Jesuit's turn. He told the other two that he was grateful for their openness and honesty. He said he was so ashamed of his own problem. He had been working on it for years but hadn't yet gotten a handle on it. He had tried hypnosis and therapy, but nothing, he said, had helped him overcome his compulsion to gossip.

posted by Blasdelb at 6:00 AM on March 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


The Episcopal Church is a pretty big tent, so I'm not sure what you have to do to be "barely even Episcopalian." On Christmas Morning, I had breakfast at a table where there were six Episcopalians, either raised in the Church or converted. We started talking and realized that among the six of us, there were four different versions of the Nicene Creed being said, as each dropped off things we didn't believe in.*

*I leave off the filioque because of some Orthodox leanings I have, my wife leaves off the part about the Resurrection of the Body, my wife's grandfather omitted Pontius Pilate's name because he thought he was getting too much blame, the rest said it as written.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 6:01 AM on March 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


A Greek Orthodox, and Evangelical, and a Jesuit are doing an archeological dig in Jerusalem. They come across a Tomb that says, in Latin, Greek, and Hebrew, "Here lies Jesus of Nazareth, who claimed he was King of the Jews, and was executed at Passover under Pontius Pilate". Excited by the find, they open the tomb, only to be horrified to find a crucified body.

"Oh my goodness," says the Orthodox. "The Church and all the good it does is based on a false event."

"Oh my goodness," says the Evangelical. "The Bible, which has guided by entire life, is nothing but a lie."

"Oh my goodness," says the Jesuit. "There really was a Jesus."

posted by Blasdelb at 6:03 AM on March 15, 2013 [27 favorites]


gjc: "The papacy is not restricted to the Cardinals. They just elect the pope; it doesn't have to be one of them. They can pick any Catholic male they want."

This is strictly speaking true. Realistically, the last non-Cardinal to be elected Pope was Urban VI in 1378. The last layman Pope appears to have been Benedict IX in 1032.

Admittedly, a number of never befores and first time in centuries have been occurring lately, but the selection of a non-Cardinal at this point seems extraordinarily unlikely.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:08 AM on March 15, 2013


At a conference about religious obedience, the Jesuit representative is asked incredulously, "Your Order places great emphasis on the vow of obedience. How do you ensure that Jesuits remain faithful to this vow?" He replies, "It's simple. Our superiors first ask us what we want to do, and then they mission us to do it. Thus, we never have any problems with obedience." Another conference participant then asks the Jesuit, "But aren't there some members of your Order who don't know what they want to do? What do you do with them?"

The Jesuit replies, "We make them the superiors!"

posted by Blasdelb at 6:10 AM on March 15, 2013 [3 favorites]


Meta
posted by Blasdelb at 6:11 AM on March 15, 2013


This one will make sense to Catholics and to those for whom the at-times weak theological commitments of actual Jesuits are a commonplace:

Q: What's the only thing that hasn't changed about the Jesuit mass?
A: The bread and wine.
posted by gauche at 6:11 AM on March 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


On Christmas Morning, I had breakfast at a table where there were six Episcopalians, either raised in the Church or converted. We started talking and realized that among the six of us, there were four different versions of the Nicene Creed being said, as each dropped off things we didn't believe in.

I had the exact opposite thing happen once in college - it was during a break in one of my classes, and two of my classmates and I were for some reason talking about the Growing Up Catholic experience. At some point we'd started talking about the Mass itself, and one of the others started reciting in a monotone: "We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty..."

"Maker of Heaven and Earth," the others of us joined in, "Of all things seen and unseen...."

And the three of us went on to recite the whole Nicene Creed in exact lockstop, same pace, same pauses for breath, same tone of voice, same everything. And when we were done we all burst into astonished and hysterical laughter.

I've made my personal peace with the church (I say that while I'm lapsed, I've lapsed amicably). But some bits of growing up Catholic were freaky.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:12 AM on March 15, 2013 [7 favorites]


He could conceivably refocus Catholic Churches to spend more time and effort tending to and lifting up the poor in their communities -- something churches historically have done well -- and less time vilifying and attacking non-Catholics for things that are not, should not and never have been their business in the first place.

As if 'lifting up the poor' isn't a major component of Catholic social teaching? I'm sure many people will appreciate being told that. Almost everything you disagree with politically in the Catholic Church goes on above the parish level. Yes, my best friend resigned from a parish after an offensive homily. But she'd be pretty damn insulted that you think her religious practice is about vilifying other people (including me, btw--some of the offensive stuff in that homily was about a group I am a member of).
posted by hoyland at 6:12 AM on March 15, 2013


When the US Bishops rolled out their (IMHO as a Classics Major) not very good retranslation of the Mass, one of the things they changed in the translation of the Nicene Creed was the bit where it used to say
"...for us and for our salvation..."
it now says
"...for us men and for our salvation..."[1]
The priest at my current parish got to this point as he was taking us through the changes for the first time, and he stopped here and said, "now, does this seem a bit sexist to anybody? Let's just say 'for us' here."

[1] The Latin here uses the word homines which can be translated "man" in the sense of something like "the history of man" or "man vs. animal" but which can be just as easily and more inclusively translated "human" which is its actual English cognate. This and a couple of the other changes seem, to me, like the Bishops going out of their way to be difficult.
posted by gauche at 6:24 AM on March 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


Episcopalians are still pretty big on the dogmatic recitation, we're just also willing to tinker with it for our own purposes.

A fun moment of religious recitation for me was being out to pick out all the Protestants at a Catholic wedding because we plowed right through the Lord's Prayer and into the Doxology while the room was mostly silent.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 6:57 AM on March 15, 2013 [5 favorites]




As if 'lifting up the poor' isn't a major component of Catholic social teaching? I'm sure many people will appreciate being told that. Almost everything you disagree with politically in the Catholic Church goes on above the parish level. Yes, my best friend resigned from a parish after an offensive homily. But she'd be pretty damn insulted that you think her religious practice is about vilifying other people (including me, btw--some of the offensive stuff in that homily was about a group I am a member of).
In his first homily, the new pope has given his opinion:
Third, professing: we can walk as much we want, we can build many things, but if we do not confess Jesus Christ, nothing will avail. We will become a pitiful NGO, but not the Church, the Bride of Christ. When one does not walk, one stalls. When one does not build on solid rocks, what happens? What happens is what happens to children on the beach when they make sandcastles: everything collapses, it is without consistency. When one does not profess Jesus Christ - I recall the phrase of Leon Bloy – “Whoever does not pray to God, prays to the devil.” When one does not profess Jesus Christ, one professes the worldliness of the devil.
Your friend is offended because someone thinks her religion vilifies other people too much, whereas she works towards lifting up the poor. How dare people think her religion vilifies other people too much! She lifts up the poor!

OK. All those devil worshipers in pitiful NGOs who also lift up the poor must be kind of confused about this, though.
posted by Flunkie at 7:11 AM on March 15, 2013


I found this on the issue of the new Pope and Catholic relations with the Anglican Communion interesting. Benedict was fairly aggressive toward Anglicans; it seems like Francis will be much more ecumenical.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 7:29 AM on March 15, 2013


Flunkie, I get what hoyland was trying to say - that a lot of the critique against the Catholic church overlooks the very real positive work done by individual parishes; and often, that that work is quite startlingly far removed from the politicking and abuses that have been going on in the upper administratia of the church structure.

And hoyland's right that this isn't fair; I was talking to my roommate about this last night, about how a lot of the run-of-the-mill priests bopping around out there are often doing things very, very differently than Benedict was hoping they'd do things. Hell, just this morning on NPR they had a piece on two different parishes here in New York - one of which has an LGBT group in the parish, and has invited a woman deacon to deliver the Homily on Good Friday. One of the biggest reasons I lapsed "amicably" is because the priests in my own parish, AND the nuns who taught the Sunday School, were all kind of awesome.

But it still does matter what the Pope and the Vatican insiders are like, what they think, and how they do things; your average Catholic isn't denying that. And that's why a lot of them are trying to change things from the inside. The priests at that church with the woman giving the Homily would love to give her Holy Orders; they all look forward to a day when she can. In the meantime, they do as much as they can, and remind themselves that changing church attitudes about gay marriage and contraception and female clergy is a Long Game.

So that's why it can feel a bit dismissive when people say "oh, your faith is about exclusion, I mean look at what the Pope says" when there are plenty of people who are indeed working for the things the church is supposed to be working for (sometimes even against the will of the church).

And, by the same token, hoyland - this is why zarq was right about the significance of Pope Francis' professed focus. Yes, the church has been about outreach all along, and yes a lot of parishes have been doing this - but, honestly, can you blame the people who aren't in the pews every Sunday who only see the press releases from the Vatican and only hear about the abuse scandals for thinking that the priorities of the Vatican have, lately, been a little wack-a-doo? Yes, parishes have been doing this work - and Pope Francis is endorsing that work as being a priority as well, rather than making dogmatic concerns a focus, and that's a big change.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:33 AM on March 15, 2013 [9 favorites]


Two points: he is named after a lovely silver pattern, possibly my mom's favorite.

And second, the first picture that I saw of the new Pope reminded me of this guy.
posted by wenestvedt at 7:34 AM on March 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


I *love* Jesuit jokes, having gone to Boston College and also to a high school run by a competing franchise. A Jesuit named James Martin wrote a book called "Between Heaven and Mirth" about faith and humor; it's pretty good. Here are two talks that he delivered at B.C:

http://www.bc.edu/content/bc/alumni/association/alumni_ed/alumniedresources/james_martin.html
and
http://frontrow.bc.edu/program/martinjames/ (which has a link to an audio-only track as well as the video)
posted by wenestvedt at 7:51 AM on March 15, 2013 [2 favorites]




In the vein of sports and popes, Barcelona has played three games during conclaves and won each 4-0.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 8:38 AM on March 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


Francis is also a big soccer fan.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:17 AM on March 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


hoyland: " As if 'lifting up the poor' isn't a major component of Catholic social teaching?

That is not in question. I tried to clarify that in rest of my comments on the subject.

I'm sure many people will appreciate being told that.

They should already know it.

Look, the Church spends considerable time and money trying to impose its religious doctrine regarding certain issues on non-Catholics and for many of us who are not Catholics, that has now become the public face of the Church, especially in the US and UK. Not Catholic charity efforts, but rather the Church's efforts to fight abortion and gay marriage in secular circles (not within its own congregations.)

I believe we would all be better off if the Pope and Vatican refocused Catholic efforts and Church congregations towards something they have traditionally done well, as opposed to attempting to influence secular legislation that affects non-Christians and denies civil rights to entire groups of people.

Feel free to disagree, but I do believe my facts are in order.

Almost everything you disagree with politically in the Catholic Church goes on above the parish level.

Let me tell you a true story:

The Jewish Conservative movement occupies a moderate doctrinal space between the Reform (liberal) movement and the Orthodox (very traditional.) Each movement has a governing body that makes doctrinal rulings and suggestions. Synagogues that align themselves with a movement have some leeway in what they will follow, doctrinally. But for the most part, they work within the guidelines.

The Reform movement embraced (for the most part) gay marriage early on. Over the last decade, Reform rabbis would nearly always perform gay marriages. On the other hand, good luck finding an Orthodox rabbi who would do so. It wasn't absolutely impossible. But very nearly.

I'm a member of the Jewish Conservative Movement. The middle child. For many years the Conservative movement had a ruling on the books that said their rabbis should also refuse to perform gay marriages. And most did.

Some congregants, including myself, didn't agree.

Rather than leave in a huff, we began lobbying our rabbis. Because the issue meant enough to us that we felt our religion, which was ostensibly founded in tolerance and good deeds should practice what it preached towards everyone, and not treat a segment of our population like pariahs or second-class citizens. If we convinced our rabbis, then we asked them to kick the issue up the ladder. Which they did. They spoke to their teachers and study partners. They spoke out at meetings. They became our representatives. And guess what happened last year.

Judaism is not Catholicism. I completely acknowledge that. Our religions treat dissent and questioning of doctrine quite differently. But still, we at the lay congregation level are not powerless. Not in your religion. Not in mine. We have some agency, and the ability to question and push and fight for what we feel is right. To make our voices heard. We can lobby for change in small numbers, to convince others who convince others, until our voices are impossible to ignore.

Perhaps I'm an idealist. I don't know. I'd rather try and fail than be apathetic.

Yes, my best friend resigned from a parish after an offensive homily. But she'd be pretty damn insulted that you think her religious practice is about vilifying other people (including me, btw--some of the offensive stuff in that homily was about a group I am a member of)."

Please re-read what I said more carefully. Please? Your religious organization certainly vilifies people and casts judgement against them. The Church opposes gay civil marriages and adoption by gay parents on moral grounds. It believes homosexual acts are intrinsically morally evil.

And so your Church lobbies secular governments to impose your religious doctrines on us all, in an attempt to curtail the civil rights of people who do not subscribe to said doctrines.

Your religious organization is not alone in that offense. But it's still wrong.
posted by zarq at 9:33 AM on March 15, 2013 [6 favorites]


>>In the vein of sports and popes, Barcelona has played three games during conclaves and won each 4-0.

Hail Satan! Your comment was the 666th is this thread! Hail Satan!
posted by item at 9:34 AM on March 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


And so your Church lobbies secular governments to impose your religious doctrines on us all, in an attempt to curtail the civil rights of people who do not subscribe to said doctrines.

As a Catholic, this stings. My scripture says "Love they neighbor," and my parish is full of kind people who share their "time, talents, and treasure," but my church's hirerarchy says stuff that I don't agree with.

And as the parent of two Cub Scouts, this has another resonance: our Pack is also full of good people who share of themselves with the boys, but the BSA national leadership clings to a hateful policy. What's different is that the BSA this week offered a poll to adult leaders, parents, and volunteers about their feelings on the policy. I am encouraged just to see these questions being asked -- and I was pleased that both of the parents I asked about the poll have said that they disagree with the National Council's policy

Now, if we can get the Scouts on board, then maybe we can take a run at the Council of Catholic Bishops.
posted by wenestvedt at 9:55 AM on March 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


Also, I didn't know that Tommy Lee Jones was a cardinal:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/the-pope/9928583/Pope-Francis-whats-in-a-name.html
(See over there on the right?)

Shades of Ducky Medwick there...
posted by wenestvedt at 9:59 AM on March 15, 2013


Verbitsky the new pope's major critic who published the expose of nefarious deeds during the dictadura, thinks the new Argentine pope could use the seductive Christian rhetoric of solidarity with the poor to undermine the populist government of Argentina and restore the exploiters to power.

Who are these "exploiters"?

Also, Verbitsky might be a semi-decent journalist nowadays, but he was a terrorist with the Montoneros back in the day. Most everyone in the current goverment had ties with them as well, a lot of resentment comes from that. So there are very few defensible people involved all around.

How familiar are you with the current situation of Argentina and its government? Because all the corrupt demagoguery and all the nefarious characters in power is not something i would come remotely close to defend unless i was a very ignorant person...
posted by palbo at 10:59 AM on March 15, 2013


The jokes of Pope John XXIII
posted by Blasdelb at 11:02 AM on March 15, 2013


Judaism is not Catholicism. I completely acknowledge that. Our religions treat dissent and questioning of doctrine quite differently. But still, we at the lay congregation level are not powerless.

But simply writing to the Vatican, as you have suggested Catholics do, is not as effective in Catholicism's case, because (as you yourself have acknowledged) Judaism is not Catholicism.

And besides, even though the Conservative Rabbis changed their thinking, how long did this change take? And, Zarq, how would you personally have felt if someone criticized Judaism as a whole, and you yourself as a Jew, in the meantime, in the manner in which you have been critiquing many of the Catholics in here?

People in here are preaching to the choir for the most part. But even so it's wise to make sure you're not pissing the choir off in the process.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:22 AM on March 15, 2013 [3 favorites]


People in here are preaching to the choir for the most part.

I see what you did there.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:14 PM on March 15, 2013


EmpressCallipygos: " But simply writing to the Vatican, as you have suggested Catholics do

What? No, I have not suggested that. I did not say that.

is not as effective in Catholicism's case, because (as you yourself have acknowledged) Judaism is not Catholicism.

What I said was that in a particular case, we lay Jews of the congregations spoke with our rabbis and convinced them the issue mattered. So then, those rabbis spoke with other rabbis. People they knew and were close to. Teachers. Study partners. And so on and so forth. And that's how change came about on the issue. I simply feel this is a lesson that can be applied to other circumstances.

I did not ever suggest that the Catholic laity go straight to the top to try to effect change. Either by writing a letter or otherwise.

And besides, even though the Conservative Rabbis changed their thinking, how long did this change take?

Years. Which is okay. I am not asking for instant miracles. hoyland implied that Church doctrine is unassailable if you are below the parish level. I am offering a different perspective for discussion. And also explaining that thanks to its own efforts, the Catholic Church has a PR problem with some of us non-Catholics.

And, Zarq, how would you personally have felt if someone criticized Judaism as a whole,

Accurately? Fine. I do it myself in comments and posts. Lots of people on MeFi criticize Jews and Judaism and Jewish beliefs and culture. If they make valid arguments, then more power to them. Judaism isn't supposed to be static. We're supposed to ponder and discuss/challenge our own beliefs and what they mean.

Look, have I said anything inaccurate about Catholic Church doctrine with regard to gays, adoption or abortion? Would you like to address that? I'm quite happy to discuss it.

and you yourself as a Jew

I haven't done that at all. At all!

Whom have I personally attacked here for their beliefs, please? Seriously, can you link to any specific comment I've made in this thread where I have called anyone out for something they believe? I've been discussing official Catholic doctrine and the word or actions of the Catholic clergy.

...in the meantime, in the manner in which you have been critiquing many of the Catholics in here?

"Catholics" ≠ the Catholic Church and its clergy. I've been criticizing the latter.

People in here are preaching to the choir for the most part. But even so it's wise to make sure you're not pissing the choir off in the process."

The doctrines and actions of the Catholic Church are not sacrosanct subjects on Metafilter. As well they shouldn't be. I'm not attacking anyone. But I am criticizing the Church on specific issues.

Frankly, if you or any other Catholic personally doesn't believe in abortion or gay marriage or gay adoption, that's perfectly fine with me. No problem. You don't have to have one and I certainly wouldn't tell you otherwise. Not my business. But here in the US, the Catholic Church has made it its mission to get secular legislation passed that ban all those things. I do think that's worth speaking out against. If you feel I'm wrong, then we can talk about it. The same if you feel I'm misguided or naive or whatever. But please don't tell me I'm saying stuff I'm not.
posted by zarq at 12:34 PM on March 15, 2013 [4 favorites]


What I said was that in a particular case, we lay Jews of the congregations spoke with our rabbis and convinced them the issue mattered. So then, those rabbis spoke with other rabbis. People they knew and were close to. Teachers. Study partners. And so on and so forth. And that's how change came about on the issue. I simply feel this is a lesson that can be applied to other circumstances. I did not ever suggest that the Catholic laity go straight to the top to try to effect change. Either by writing a letter or otherwise.

Well, then, since you know so much about Catholicism, what would you suggest they do?

Wait, before you answer, though - what is your evidence that they aren't doing it already?

Years. Which is okay. I am not asking for instant miracles. hoyland implied that Church doctrine is unassailable if you are below the parish level. I am offering a different perspective for discussion.

Hoyland was not saying that. Hoyland was reminding people about the actual faith rather than just the Bad PR.

Look, have I said anything inaccurate about Catholic Church doctrine with regard to gays, adoption or abortion? Would you like to address that? I'm quite happy to discuss it.

You have not. And in fact, if you look back at what I said to both hoyland AND flunkie, I acknowledge that you have a point.

What I am saying, though, is that despite your protestations that you did not suggest that Catholic laity "go straight to the top to effect change," whether or not you are aware of it, you are indeed giving the impression that this is what you expect, and you are also giving the impression that you do not trust that many of them are already doing that.

As I have also already said, you are preaching to the converted. Most of the Catholics on the blue most likely agree with you about gays, adoption, or abortion. What I am objecting to, however, is what appears to be an assumption that they do not, and what appears to be an assumption that they're not already trying to effect change themselves - coupled with what appears to be an assumption that it's a hell of a lot easier than it actually is.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:46 PM on March 15, 2013 [1 favorite]






Empress, I like all the things that your say, but there's one point that was not addressed.
But here in the US, the Catholic Church has made it its mission to get secular legislation passed that ban all those things [gays, adoption or abortion].
For me there is a bright line being crossed there. And I'm sure many of the Catholics here are working to get their Bishops out of politics. But until they do stop trying to inject their religion into my government I think they deserve all the push-back they get.
posted by benito.strauss at 1:10 PM on March 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


EmpressCallipygos: "Well, then, since you know so much about Catholicism, what would you suggest they do?

Your defensiveness notwithstanding, I suggested the example as a jumping off point to discuss whether something similar would be possible within the Catholic Church. Because denying that the Catholic laity can have any influence seems unnecessarily defeatist and makes little sense to me.

Wait, before you answer, though - what is your evidence that they aren't doing it already?

Are they?

So which is it? Is change possible to initiate change from the level of the lay congregation or not?

Hoyland was not saying that. Hoyland was reminding people about the actual faith rather than just the Bad PR.

If hoyland has something to clarify to me, that would be fine.

I've now had to correct you several times in this thread. So I'd really rather hear it directly from hoyland, if you don't mind.

You have not. And in fact, if you look back at what I said to both hoyland AND flunkie, I acknowledge that you have a point.

And yet you're still interpreting them incorrectly as personal attacks and had to be corrected by me multiple times?

What I am saying, though, is that despite your protestations that you did not suggest that Catholic laity "go straight to the top to effect change," whether or not you are aware of it, you are indeed giving the impression that this is what you expect,

By saying the exact opposite?

Not only did I not say what you're accusing me of, but I've just now reiterated what I actually said. At this point I'm really not sure what to tell you, Empress. You're choosing to read something into my comments that isn't there.

I say this as gently as I possibly can: I would be happy to repeat myself a third time for emphasis, if you like?

and you are also giving the impression that you do not trust that many of them are already doing that.

"Trust" is such an interesting word choice here. This isn't about trust. It's about examples not in evidence. By all means please feel free to provide some concrete examples. I'd be pleasantly surprised to see them. What I have seen are quite a few anecdotes from friends and others leaving the Church in protest, which is not the same thing as staying and attempting to change it from within.

What I am objecting to, however, is what appears to be an assumption that they do not, and what appears to be an assumption that they're not already trying to effect change themselves - coupled with what appears to be an assumption that it's a hell of a lot easier than it actually is."

I have not said or implied that changing the Catholic Church from within would be easy. I acknowledged that it would take time and that I am not expecting instant miracles.

Your comments seem to be to be less about what I am actually saying than creating straw men to be knocked down. Again, I invite you to address my words directly.
posted by zarq at 1:20 PM on March 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


"But until they do stop trying to inject their religion into my government I think they deserve all the push-back they get."

You see, its this ambiguous othering they that people are objecting to here. It is unambiguously not correct if referring to anyone in this thread, Catholic or otherwise; and hell, as has been noted up thread, American Catholics are actually more pro gay marriage than Americans as a whole.
posted by Blasdelb at 1:28 PM on March 15, 2013


It is unambiguously not correct if referring to anyone in this thread, Catholic or otherwise;

While I don't agree that the description and the ideology behind the description "trying to inject their religion into my government," to the extent that it means "being opposed to legal abortion and to legalizing gay marriage," I'll cop to that (as I have in other threads.)
posted by Jahaza at 2:05 PM on March 15, 2013 [3 favorites]


zarq: "By all means please feel free to provide some concrete examples. I'd be pleasantly surprised to see them. What I have seen are quite a few anecdotes from friends and others leaving the Church in protest, which is not the same thing as staying and attempting to change it from within. "

I'd also like to note that this whole "you're making an assumption about intent" discussion is really a derail of my original points, which had nothing to do with the beliefs and intents of individual Catholics. Quite a few Catholics have voted for gay marriage amendments in states like Maine, New York and California, among others. There's a huge population of Catholic individuals here in the US that do not follow Church doctrine in these matters. As blasdelb says, the Catholic Church is not in step with American Catholics on the issue. The majority of whom are pro-gay marriage.

The statement that was originally made was "Almost everything you disagree with politically in the Catholic Church goes on above the parish level.", thus implying that it would not be possible to effect change from below. I disagree with that implication.

And that, by the way, was in response to my comment that it would be nice to see the Pope emphasize a change in focus from abortion and gay marriage to helping the poor.

I keep seeing editorials and articles discussing and in some cases lamenting the decline of liberal Christianity. I'd simply like to see the Church hierarchy focus on different issues and not spend so much effort trying to impose their doctrines on non-Catholics. To repeat what I said upthread, I think that would be better for all of us. Catholic and non-Catholic.
posted by zarq at 2:07 PM on March 15, 2013


You see, its this ambiguous othering "they" that people are objecting to here

"They" refers to those who are trying to put their religion into government. Sorry if there was any confusion. I should probably have said "it", in reference to "The Catholic Church". But it gets very confusing with what is the Catholic Church and what is not, which might just be a valid reflection of a complicated situation.

So let me say what I don't hear people saying, and go from there. I don't hear people saying "I don't care what The Pope/Cardinal Dolan/Cardinal Mahony says. We follow what we think to be important in Christ's teachings in my congregation, and the hateful things those men say really don't affect us." [Jahaza, I'm pretty sure that none of those thoughts are held by you. I sincerely appreciate your honesty, and don't want you to think I'm falsely attributing sentiments to you.]

Is this something people think but don't say, or is it not true, or is it true but not said to outsiders? I really don't know, and in writing this I've become really curious what Catholics think.
posted by benito.strauss at 2:56 PM on March 15, 2013


You see, its this ambiguous othering they that people are objecting to here. It is unambiguously not correct if referring to anyone in this thread, Catholic or otherwise

I appreciate Blasdelb's point here because that wasn't how I read benito.strauss' comment at all. It's a welcome reminder to be specific in phrasing as people from differing backgrounds will interpret things differently leading to misunderstandings.

The mention of othering reminds me of a hope I left off of my list above. I hope Pope Francis chooses not to engage in the othering of atheists that his predecessor practiced:
On the other hand, ideological rejection of God and an atheism of indifference, oblivious to the Creator and at risk of becoming equally oblivious to human values, constitute some of the chief obstacles to development today. A humanism which excludes God is an inhuman humanism. Only a humanism open to the Absolute can guide us in the promotion and building of forms of social and civic life — structures, institutions, culture and ethos — without exposing us to the risk of becoming ensnared by the fashions of the moment.
posted by audi alteram partem at 3:57 PM on March 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


"I don't care what The Pope/Cardinal Dolan/Cardinal Mahony says."

OK, I will take the bait. Lots of dogma is exclusionary and cruel: no birth control even for disease prevention, no gays, et al. In counterpoint to that, I say that the New Testament Jesus was all about inclusion and love and forgiveness.

"And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love." (1 Cor 13)

"Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.'...Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.'" (Matthew 25:34-36,40)

"Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, 'Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?' Jesus answered, 'I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.'" (Matthew 18:21-22)

And if they whip out the crank Old Testament God and talk about men lying down with men, I will refer them to Deuteronomy 14 and make sure they only eat alive things (Deu 14:21) and also no pork, and definitely no shrimp.

I was taught by a lot of priests and nuns and lay people, and this is the sort of Catholicism they passed down to me. More Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton, less smiting and brimstone.
posted by wenestvedt at 4:09 PM on March 15, 2013 [3 favorites]


Thanks for the response, wenestvedt. It made me think of some more things to say, but I've taken an oath to not derail religion threads and I think that's where I'm heading so I'll leave it there.

> audi alteram partem: I hope Pope Francis chooses not to engage in the othering of atheists that his predecessor practiced:

That would be wonderful. I would love to be able to come into a future thread and say that I was wrong about what a Pope could be.
posted by benito.strauss at 4:38 PM on March 15, 2013


Actually, as someone raised Catholic, I invite the church's othering of my current beliefs. The feeling is mutual.
posted by spitbull at 4:53 PM on March 15, 2013


Wenestvedt, for the record Jesus declared all foods clean. Shrimp represented us goyim.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 5:08 PM on March 15, 2013


Palbo please continue with the linked short article:
Verbitsky knows the new Pope’s modus operandi quite well. Francis renounced the grandeur of his episcopal residence, and expressing solidarity with the common man as he rode a bus to work. (Not something Cristina Kirchner does.) But he did not do so for the sake of the revolution, at least not the Marxist revolution, but instead for the sake of the revolution of the Gospel. This, unlike free market ideologies, poses a direct threat to the modern left, which claims a monopoly interest in the poor.
Overshadowed by the disappearances of 30,000 plus people during the dictatorship were the economic crimes of over 600 cases of companies that were liquidated, hollowed out, taken over or appropriated, for the sake of outright theft or because they were not in line with the dictatorship’s economic liberalisation policies.
Verbitsky was indeed a Montonero, he was also and still is a respected investigative journalist who has exposed several scandals.
posted by adamvasco at 5:43 PM on March 15, 2013


Pope Francis snubs Cardinal Law.
posted by drezdn at 5:49 PM on March 15, 2013


Really? Coming from a (presumed) doctor of the church like yourself, St. Alia, that is great news. Praise the Lord and pass the cocktail sauce! :7)

And benito.strauss, I am admittedly still a pretty naive believer, even after all those years of religious study (through college). But I hope for the best ad try my hardest. *shrug* I would be willing to engage, if you want, but I also understand when people want to back off from a discussion. (Oddly, other than on MeFi, I don't much talk about religion. I wonder why that is...)
posted by wenestvedt at 5:57 PM on March 15, 2013


I suppose turning Cardinal Law over to Boston authorities for objective investigation of his crimes and perhaps some solace to and justice for the victims was too much to hope for.
posted by zarq at 5:59 PM on March 15, 2013


Kinch, you fearful Jesuit!

As in all manners of faith, I will wait for the judgement of my learned Catholic spiritual leader before having an opinion on Pope Francis. Unfortunately, Craig Finn has not issued a statement yet.
posted by Charlemagne In Sweatpants at 6:47 PM on March 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


It may take (even) Pope Francis a while to place Criminal Law above Cardinal Law.
posted by de at 6:58 PM on March 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


I suppose turning Cardinal Law over to Boston authorities for objective investigation of his crimes and perhaps some solace to and justice for the victims was too much to hope for.

According to Wikipedia, he was investigated, and the Massachusetts Attorney General found that regardless of how despicable his actions were, Law had not committed any crimes.

Even if Law did return to Boston, what do you propose that Boston or Massachusetts authorities should do?
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 10:11 PM on March 15, 2013 [4 favorites]


Overshadowed by the disappearances of 30,000 plus people during the dictatorship were the economic crimes of over 600 cases of companies that were liquidated, hollowed out, taken over or appropriated, for the sake of outright theft or because they were not in line with the dictatorship’s economic liberalisation policies.

I guess i just don't see the point about this whole digression. I'm not sure if you got the impression that i was defending the military just because i say that the terrorists on the other side are also bad, and that they're in power now fucking things up in a different way?
And the the present "left" governments in latinamerica also nationalize and appropriate private companies when it suits them, so whatever.

Back to the initial topic, there's one allegation about the pope "disowning" the activities of a couple of priests, that were then abducted and tortured by the military.
There are also allegations saying that when he found out the priests were taken, he found a way to get in touch with top military people and plead for their lives, which were then spared.
Some other people (including the official statements) say that he was just not involved at all in anything.

My point is that, in my relatively uninformed opinion, the connection to the dictatorship seems flimsy and very he-said-she-said, whatever happened doesn't seem very clear, and it's being extrapolated to him being a military collaborator.
Or are the complaints that he kept his head down and turned a blind eye to whatever he may or may not have known was going on, like pretty much everyone else in the country?
posted by palbo at 10:47 PM on March 15, 2013


DevilsAdvocate, I had completely forgotten that MA authorities were unable to prosecute him. Thanks for the reminder. Yeah, nothing can be done in Boston, unfortunately.

It's just always galled me that Pope John Paul II took him in, protected him,allowed him to live in relative luxury in Rome and even put him in such an influential position that Law was able to help choose who would become Bishops. Reportedly, Law was living quite well. After all Law did.

Thinking about it, I'm actually quite impressed that the new Pope is being so harsh. A harbinger of things to come for pedophile priests, I hope.
posted by zarq at 5:23 AM on March 16, 2013 [2 favorites]


The main charge against Bergoglio, then a priest in his 30s, is that as the provincial, or superior, of the Society of Jesus in the country, he let the military know that he was suspending his protection of two troublesome left-leaning priests, Orlando Yorio and Franz Jalics, allowing them to be apprehended and detained and tortured for five months.
Argentine human rights lawyer Marcelo Parrilli brought Bergoglio's case to the authorities, accusing him of implication in the kidnapping. That was in April 2005
Bergoglio twice used his right to refuse to give evidence in court. When he testified in 2010, his comments were "evasive," according to human rights lawyer Myriam Bregman.
But hey he's the Pope now so nothing is going to change. It should be noted that the two priests were liberation theologists, a doctrine rejected by Bergoglio and which his conservative predecessor Ratzinger described as a fundamental threat to the faith of the church..
posted by adamvasco at 7:02 AM on March 16, 2013 [2 favorites]


Frank Bruni: Beyond the Bedroom -- "It's time--long past time--for the Catholic Church to start dwelling less in the bedroom, more in the soup kitchen."
posted by ericb at 1:01 PM on March 16, 2013 [2 favorites]


Meeting with journalists this morning, Pope Francis laid out his vision for the Catholic church, which includes cutting spending on ornate ceremony and instead spending that money on the poor. He urged excited fellow-Argentines to skip the costly trip to Rome to visit the first non-European Pope in almost 1,300 years, and instead give that money to the poor.

“Oh, how I would like a poor Church, and for the poor,” he told the gathered journalists. He explained the reason he took the name, Francis, after St. Francis of Assissi, was because of St. Francis’s devotion to the poor and love of animal life. On climate change, the Pope remarked, “Right now, we don’t have a very good relation with creation.”

posted by gerryblog at 2:11 PM on March 16, 2013 [2 favorites]




JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - A South African cardinal who helped elect Pope Francis this week has told the BBC pedophilia is an illness and not a crime.

Cardinal Wilfrid Fox Napier, the Catholic Archbishop of Durban, told BBC Radio 5 on Saturday that pedophilia was a "disorder" that needed to be treated.

-
"Now don't tell me that those people are criminally responsible like somebody who chooses to do something like that. I don't think you can really take the position and say that person deserves to be punished. He was himself damaged."

posted by Drinky Die at 4:52 PM on March 16, 2013


"Now don't tell me that those people are criminally responsible like somebody who chooses to do something like that. I don't think you can really take the position and say that person deserves to be punished. He was himself damaged."

And Reddit leaped for joy.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 6:09 PM on March 16, 2013


A Jesuit and a Rabbi operated a school and a synagogue across the street from each other. Since their schedules intertwined, they decided to go in together to buy a car. After the purchase, they drove it home and parked in on the street between their establishments. A few minutes later, the rabbi looked out and saw the priest sprinkling water on their new car. It didn't need a wash, so he ran out and asked the priest what he was doing.
"I'm blessing it," the Jesuit replied.

The rabbi considered this a moment, then said, "Oh," and ran back inside the synagogue. He reappeared a moment later with a hacksaw, ran to the back of the car and cut off the last two inches of the tailpipe.

posted by Blasdelb at 8:33 AM on March 17, 2013 [6 favorites]




5. He worked as a bouncer at a bar
6. He had a girlfriend once, and liked to tango
posted by zarq at 10:40 AM on March 14


MAGS'S BUCKET LIST (REVISED)

1. Be thrown out of a bar by the pope
2. Tango with the pope
posted by magstheaxe at 9:11 AM on March 19, 2013 [4 favorites]




Pope Francis once supported civil unions

Faced with the likelihood that same-sex marriage would be legalized in Argentina in 2010, the head of the Argentina Bishop’s Conference, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, wanted the church to support civil unions as ‘the lesser of two evils.”

Bergoglio, who is now Pope Francis I, was rebuked over the idea by the other bishops, according to the pope’s authorized biographer. Bergoglio went on to become the public face of opposition to the marriage equality law proposed by President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner.

posted by Drinky Die at 12:03 AM on March 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


In an interfaith meeting, Pope Francis extended an olive branch to those "who, while not belonging to any religious tradition, feel, however the need to search for the truth, the goodness and the beauty of God, and who are our precious allies in efforts to defend the dignity of man, in the building of a peaceful coexistence between peoples and in the careful protection of creation."

He suggests that "we know how much violence has been provoked in recent history by the attempt to eliminate God and the divine from the horizon of humanity." And he says nothing of atheists who wish to join in the work of peaceful coexistence and who do not possess what he calls an "original openness to transcendence that is inherent in the human heart."
posted by audi alteram partem at 8:45 AM on March 21, 2013 [2 favorites]




Pope Francis includes women in papal feet washing ceremony for first time. Pope also breaks convention by travelling to Casal del Marmo prison on Rome's outskirts for traditional Holy Thursday mass

I was almost tempted to think about FPP for this, including the reactions of conservative Catholics. The Rorate Caeli blog expresses the conservative viewpoint on Francis' actions. As always, the comments make for insightful, if maddening, reading. Most are along the lines of "I wish this was all a bad dream, but it is not. I still can't believe it is all happening." and, "Next step: woman/girls as servants in papal masses?". Sigh.
posted by vac2003 at 8:44 PM on March 29, 2013


No only did he wash a woman's feet, but a Muslim too. They are going to kill him. The conservatives I mean, not the Muslims.
posted by humanfont at 9:07 PM on March 29, 2013






I'm not Catholic, but I must say I approve of a lot of Francis's moves so far.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:49 PM on March 30, 2013 [1 favorite]




Easter 2007 vs Easter 2013
posted by Blasdelb at 3:13 PM on March 31, 2013 [2 favorites]


TPM: Pope Reluctant To Be Pope
posted by Chrysostom at 7:01 PM on March 31, 2013




... and Patti Smith
posted by philip-random at 9:54 AM on April 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


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