Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Habemus Papam

I am not Catholic but Lutheran.  If not for Martin Luther, who knows where my beliefs would've been rooted...

My father was Catholic, my mother Lutheran.  That seems to be the way it goes, doesn't it?  The mother often seems to be the one who decides such things.

The point of this post is not for me to wax philosophical.  It is to comment on the historic events of the day.

Habemus Papam:  We have a pope.

Jorge Mario Bergoglio, born in Buenos Aires, one of the five children of Italian immigrants, his father was a railway worker, his mother a housewife.

The first words I heard to describe him were "humble" and a "man of the people".  

Those aren't bad words, are they?

As I watched the white smoke boil from that silly little chimney, I found myself practically moved to tears.

Again, I am not Catholic, yet I have been strongly moved by these events.  The tradition, the rituals, the whatever you want to call it, has always fascinated me.

Today, however, wasn't about that.

It was, for me, about faith.  

St. Peter's Square was packed despite the fact that it was a cold and rainy evening in Rome.  When the smoke was white, the joy was palpable.  They cheered, they chanted, they sang, all with great joy.

What I noticed about the crowd were the number of young faces present, faces filled with joy, hope, and, dare I say it, faith.

I needed this day.

I needed the reminder that faith is not outdated.  It is not dead.  It was there, burning brightly in St. Peter's Square.

I pray for the new pontiff's health.  I pray for his humility and his faith.  May they carry him through the troubled waters ahead.


Bump said...

Glad to see your Christian tolerance. I've a nephew who is pastor of a small mid-western Lutheran church. He too talks well of other denominations. He and I probably agree that all Christians worthy of the name have made that famous "leap of faith". Okay. Neither my nephew or I understand Islam. Apparently there is no "leap" involved to be a believer? The Prophet Muhammad is their teacher and Allah is their God. There is a wide gap between Islam and Christianity and radicalized Muslims intend to murder all infidels, including Christians, that refuse Islam. Question: Aggressive, militant Islam is a horrific threat to the new Pope. We may be seeing the start of a religious war between Catholics and other Christians and Islam. How should the Pope direct or lead the Christian response?

CJ said...


I try to be tolerant but after Boston... my tolerance is a bit thin.

Why do you see a war between Catholics and other Christians? I'm not sure I agree with it.

I think the Pope has a huge job ahead of him and I honestly have no idea what he should do, mainly because my feelings about Islam have been so hardened by the violence they continue to propagate.