It's a Great Time to Be Catholic!

So, I’m thinking now’s a good time to be getting all Catholic on the blog because HABEMUS PAPAM, y’all!  This doesn’t happen every day–I mean, this is only the fourth time it’s happened in my whole life (which is edging ever closer toward the–gasp–half-century mark).
Pope Paul VI was just a picture on the school wall to me, less important by far than Father Henkel, whose picture was up there too.  Pope John Paul I, bless his heart, wasn’t around long enough to make an impression.  I just remember being enraged when I got to school one morning and a classmate (it was Chris Clem, I remember) announced that he was dead.  (Isn’t it weird to think of how long it used to take to find out things?)  I loved Pope John Paul II, as did most of the world.  (Fun fact:  he was a good poker player, according to a Polish History professor at Georgetown who knew this from personal experience.) I knew he’d be a tough act to follow but I’ve got no complaints about Pope Benedict XVI.  His graceful resignation, I believe, will turn out to have been a great gift to the Church, as it has resulted in  . . .
Pope Francis!  Just the name makes me swoon.  St. Francis, apparently the most beloved saint according to everyone on the Internet (do they go by the number of yard statues, I wonder? The number of people who choose him as Confirmation saint?).  So many ideas come to mind when we hear his name–his Prayer for Peace, the Canticle of the Sun, preaching to the birds, talking to the wolf, holiness, poverty, stigmata, the Franciscans, “Rebuild my Church . . .”  No matter what was going on in the Holy Father’s head when he picked that name, it had to be good.
He’s a Jesuit!  I went to Georgetown so I love Jesuits.  Now certain people can just stop making sly comments about them because the POPE IS ONE SO IT’S NOT NICE.
He’s from Latin America!  I wanted a Pope from Latin America or Africa so thank you, Holy Spirit, for taking note.  Seriously, though, the Church in Europe is in a bad way.  Most of the Catholic countries of Europe seem to be so in name only.  Churches are empty.  Maybe some fresh blood is a good idea?
Then there’s everything I’ve read about him and I know you’ve read it too–kissing the feet of AIDS victims and riding buses and cooking his own meals . . .  even the anti-Catholic muckrakers (and oh how they are always out in full force) haven’t been able to find much mud to sling.
Finally, just look at him!  He looks kind, don’t you think?
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I don’t think I was wrong about Pope Francis; do you?  I’m sharing this today at the #WorthRevisit linkup.  Please visit the hosts here and here.  You won’t be sorry!

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  1. Woohoo! I’m with you, sister. Cool to be Catholic–as my husband’s t-shirt says! Viva Pope Francis I!

  2. Kathy Jenkins says:

    A big woohoo from me as well! I love Pope Francis…he is the embodiment, for me, of what being a Catholic should be…very genuine and selfless…truly following God and being very connected with Him…I am very excited & energized by this new chapter in our faith…It is indeed a great time to be Catholic!

  3. Clisby says:

    Leslie,
    I have a question about the election of the Pope. Just recently I read a newspaper article that said Francis (sorry, can’t remember his original name right this moment) had been 2nd in the balloting when Benedict became pope. I thought everything was supposed to be super-secret – how would anyone know who came in 2nd? I asked my husband, who is Catholic, and he said he was wondering the same thing. Maybe that spy-sweep of the Sistine Chapel isn’t 100% reliable?
    Clisby

    • lesliesholly says:

      I really did wonder the same thing myself. All I can think is that Cardinals are human too and people must talk. Maybe it’s even okay to talk after it’s over–I’m not sure. I did read an interesting article which said that it’s a misinterpretation to think he was really in the running at all–apparently putting his name forward at that time was a purely political move to block Benedict’s election and had Benedict been withdrawn a new candidate would have been put forward.

  4. Clisby says:

    My daughter asked whether anyone has ever refused to accept election to pope. Neither my husband nor I had any idea. I would guess that if a cardinal had a really good reason not to be elected (like he knew he was dying of a terminal illness), he’d make sure word got around. I told my daughter that if you really believed God was guiding the cardinals, maybe you wouldn’t feel free to decline. But I don’t know.

  5. Caroline says:

    I love Pope Francis already. I love how humble he is. I also love that he is from Latin America. He seems to personable and you can just see the kindness in his eyes. So absolutely so far I am very happy with this choice.
    We have a statue of St Francis on our deck (since we’re city folk and don’t really have our own “yard”) 😉 and St Francis is my favorite saint so needless to say that I was moved to know he chose Francis as his name. I also think it’s telling that he’s a Jesuit yet chose Francis as his name which I think is a good marriage: Jesuit and Franciscan.
    Gil likes him too and I think this is a really good thing for the church!

  6. Maggie May says:

    I also love St. Francis 🙂

  1. August 30, 2018

    […] night, I felt physically sick.  I think I have made it pretty clear here and elsewhere that I love Pope Francis.  And because I am a faithful and obedient Catholic, albeit a bad one, I would have been sickened […]

  2. November 1, 2018

    […] is a secret to no one who knows me, whether on social media or in real life, that I love Pope Francis.  So when I was offered the opportunity to review a picture book about him, I jumped at it.  I […]

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