3/15/13

Pope Francis: not a movie, not a novel - real time!


This morning Pope Francis called the international head of the Jesuits - and placed the call on his own. Here's the switchboard operator telling the story of answering the phone at the Jesuit headquarters and finding out that it's the pope calling.




He chooses a simple outfit to wear
- and leaves the ermine-trimmed, red velvet cape on its hangar.

He prefers the simple cross already around his neck
to the ornate and bejeweled one they hand him.

He declines a throne
- and stands to stand to greet his brother cardinals.

He asks the people in St. Peter's Square and around the world
to bless him before he blesses them.

He walks by the limo waiting for him and climbs on the bus.

He picks up his own luggage and pays his own bill
at the place where he's been staying.

He's late for breakfast
- so he finds an empty seat and joins the others.

He places a phone call - with no assistance.

He makes unscripted remarks, ad lib, off the cuff.

These may seem like simple things but when the pronoun "he" refers to the pope, these simple gestures are telling and compelling.

It's as if this were a movie or a novel whose ending finds the man elected pope backing off from the" pomp and circumstance" and choosing, instead, the simpler way, the simpler gesture, the simpler sign.

That this all began at the get-go and continues to unfold before us leads me to hope that none of this is by chance but rather by design.

And what a welcome, refreshing, beautiful design this is!


 

   
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1 comment:

John Fitz said...

I just spent a night talking with a friend about the need to simplify one's life before trying to tackle a complex problem or difficult reality. I, too, was first drawn to the simple act of Pope Francis making his own meals and living in an apartment. And you are right: in the grand scheme of life it means little because most of us do that every day. But it is good to have a "pope" who tries to live in concert with his flock.