Sunday, April 20, 2008

Wondrous mysteries

I watched the coverage of the Pope's final message to the lucky faithful -- 60,000 hankie-waving fans in Yankee Stadium -- and can only shake my head in disbelief. Am I the only one who doesn't understand this Pope-worship stuff? It is so weirdly absurd that I hardly know what to make of it. Who are these people driving hundreds of miles to catch a glimpse of him? Those who turn out by the thousands, even without tickets, just to be near him for a few minutes? Looking at the pontiff (just the word makes me laugh) clad from head to toe in white, barely this side of the grass, reminds me so much of the movie Foul Play that the whole thing seems hilarious.

I am pretty sure that no one I know personally would even consider going to great trouble to see the Pope (except my mom, of course), so it makes me wonder what kind of person does. Are they part of other groups that also make me slightly uncomfortable, like NASCAR fans maybe? Or those who drive around the country in silver RVs looking for other people with silver RVs? Maybe I'm just jealous that I wasn't invited to join the club. I did do a ten-year stint in Catholic schools, after all, and never missed Sunday mass until I went off to college. Even in Boulder I went to St. Thomas Aquinas for a few months, until time spent in the confession booth started interfering with my studies. So why do I not know what they know?

No pithy analysis will be forthcoming. As I said, this is beyond me.



suesun said...

I saw John Paul II standing in his little window waving many, many years ago. I stood with the multitudes in Vatican City and wondered all the same things as you, yet also aware of how cool it was to be seeing the Pope in Rome!

Marie said...

Yes, very cool, from the point of history -- Jesus commissioning Peter, the Dark Ages, the Crusades, intrigue, exorcisms, omens, art, architecture.

But seeing the Pope whipping around in his kooky Pope Mobile while the faithful swoon just slays me to no end.

Sioux said...

Pomp, rituals and hierarchy in a baboon tribe are similar but the smells are more exciting, all these men in starched robes projecting industrial soaps and coarse lavender from the bins of countless nuns, all menstruating together through cut rate napkins purchased at the same religious supply store by the Economic Sister, the one whose real fondness is not the Pope, but that cute novice who still smells like the farm where she was raised, a bouquet of fresh milk and musk. Now that's true religion!

Marie Walden said...

Who are you, enigmatic Sioux? My finely-honed intuition tells me that you are one of mine.