VIVA IL PAPA! LONG LIVE POPE FRANCIS!!!
I heard this morning on the radio on the shuttle (we had a new driver today and he was listening to old oldies; he was a mite clueless but that is to be expected if it was his first morning driving the shuttle) that a papal ballot had been taken this morning and that the black fumata (I hope I have that word right!) arose from the chimney. Still not another Pope!
It's really amusing how many people were desperately hoping for an American Pope. LOL. I mean, really. There has only been ONE English Pope (I want to say it was Adrian IV, but although I am fairly sure about the Adrian I am not so sure about the IV). I mean, what sort of ego/ethnocentricism do Americans have, that we think we are so important that the next Pope MUST be American? I mean, our country is actually pretty young in the whole scheme of world history. We've only been a major player since WWI or so.
Idiots. The world does NOT revolve around America. Or, more precisely, the world does not revolve around Americans, which are mostly what is wrong with America.
Okay, okay, I was kind of cheering for Cardinal Timmy Dolan from NYC. Why not? I have heard great things about him. (Plus, he has become memetic on Catholic Memes for his 'Cardinal Batman' moment.) I even heard he might be a contender on the radio. No such luck.
However, I suppose you could say that, technically, we did get an 'American' Pope...
I had not been home long when one of mom's relatives called to say that white smoke had risen from the chimney in the Sistine Chapel. She sent me off to go look up the news on the computer. However, I wasn't apparently doing it fast enough so she shooed me off her iMac (we all loathe that computer, by the way. It must have been made on the Friday before a major holiday or something. It works only when it feels like it, and it doesn't feel like it very often) and searched for a live news feed herself. We finally found one, and got to listen to the inane chatter and speculations of the news people while we waited for the Pope to come out onto the balcony.
I am a great and/or terrible person at these times. To distract from the stupid commentary, I started talking about the history of St. Peter's Basilica, the various architects it went through and who built what (Bramante, Raphael, Michelangelo, Della Porta, Maderno, Bernini, etc.). Yes, I give free history lessons all the time. Someone should just grab a roll of duct tape and shut me up.
Anyway, finally a cardinal came out on the balcony and began to read the proclamation of the new Pope in Latin. It was echoing badly and a translator picked up halfway through, so I couldn't catch who the Pope was, although we did hear 'Francis'. We decided pretty quickly that there had never been a Pope Francis before, but the media, amusingly enough, did not, and for a while kept "Pope Francis I" on the title. *snerk* You only add the distinction of "the First" after there has been a "Second". Lol...
Anyway, commentary soon supplied that the cardinal who had been elevated to the papacy was Jorge Mario Bergoglio, from Argentina. When it was mentioned that his father was from Italy, I will admit that all I could think of was Petrus Romanus- the last of the papal prophecies of St. Malachy. Yikes!
Pope Francis soon came out and gave his first Urbi et Orbi (to the city and to the world) blessing- it also counts as a plenary indulgence, with the usual conditions. I had better make it to Confession this Saturday. Anyway, I don't think he was necessarily freaked out on the balcony. To me he seemed a bit sad, looking out at crowds of errant children, but kind.
He is the first non-European Pope since Pope Gregory III who reigned from 731 to 741. (We have a Pope chart. I just looked that up. Do not freak out. My knowledge is not that encyclopedic.) He is also the first Pope to have an original name since Pope Lando in 914. Yes, Pope Lando. Surprise, surprise.
Pope Francis asked us all to pray for him- he asked for the crowd's prayers before extending his blessing to them, and it was amazing how silent they all became. So let us all rally behind our new Pope and support him whole-heartedly with our prayers.
And, since I can't resist the urge to add a few funny things, enjoy these gems from Catholic Memes.
One can only imagine all 115 voting cardinals wearing those buttons around Vatican City. XD
And here we have the return of Cardinal Batman!!!