Sunday, April 17, 2005

Before the Papal Conclave

The Papal Conclave begins tomorrow morning (US Eastern time) in which a new Pope will be selected by the college of cardinals. There is no reason not to have confidence that the cardinals will be guided by The Holy Spirit in their selection and that the new pope will continue and extend the work of Pope John Paul II the Great.

But in these hours before we begin watching for the color of smoke rising from the chimney of the Sistine Chapel, I find it fun to speculate. Wouldn't it be interesting if Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger of Germany were to be selected and if he were to take the name Pope Pius XIII? Wouldn't it be fun to listen to the indignant squeals of the liberals who have perverted the "Spirit of Vatican II" for their own ends at the thought of the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith becoming the Vicar of Christ? And wouldn't it be fun to listen to and read of the outrage of those (mostly) non-Catholics who have libeled the memory of Pope Pius XII the past several years? Would it be a sin to enjoy the spectacle of a thumb in the eye of the enemies of the Church?

Ah well, I am praying for unity as well as for wisdom in the imminent conclave. But I am also praying for loyalty to the future Pope and the Magisterium by church leaders, especially in the United States.

Saturday, April 02, 2005


I've been glued to Fox News and EWTN for the past couple of days. But then I wandered away to play with Mathematica and when I came back to the television, it was just being announced that Pope John Paul II had passed away. I am experiencing a distinct sadness but also pride in the Catholic Church and the conduct of this particular Pope. He, along with Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher, was one of the great anti-Communist warhorses of the 1980s who forced the Soviet Union to its end. Just as crucially, he stopped the erosion of fidelity to Catholic dogma, loyalty to the Papacy and to the Magisterium that was being accelerated by liberal "Catholics" who used what they insisted was the "spirit of Vatican II" for their own immoral ends. Pray for the soul of the Pope and pray for Holy Spirit to guide the cardinals to select a new Pope who will continue to defend the 2000-year-old Catholic faith.