Tuesday, July 2, 2019

'Humble' Francis the destroyer of Christendom, ‘It is not just about migrants. It’s about not excluding anyone.’


Blabby Francis...



...should shut up...


...and read the Holy Bible

“For the poor you have always with you: but me you have not always.” 
Matthew 26, 11

For my flesh is meat indeed: and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, abideth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father; so he that eateth me, the same also shall live by me [...] After this many of his disciples went back; and walked no more with him.” 
John 6, 56-58 & 67

Monday, July 1, 2019

James Martin, “be the LGBT Catholic whom you are called to be by Jesus Christ himself.”




• excerpts •

“Be tough. The last few years have seen many positive steps for LGBT Catholics. And there are two big trends. The first can be summarized by two words: “Pope Francis.” His five most famous words are still, “Who am I to judge?,” which was first a response to the question of gay priests and then expanded to LGBT people. Francis is the first pope ever to use the word “gay.” He has LGBT friends. And he’s appointed many LGBT-supportive cardinals, archbishops and bishops. Another trend is that as more and more Catholics are coming out and being open about their gender identity, they and their families are bringing their hopes and desires into their parishes, and slowly the culture of the church is being changed.”

[...]

“Jesus is free from the need to be loved, liked or approved of. He is free from the need to be loved by the Samaritans. He is free of the need to be liked by the disciples, as when he rebukes James and John. And he is free of the need to be approved of by his family, who early on think he’s crazy. He is supremely free. And what is he free to do? To follow the Father’s will.

Many people in the LGBT community feel unwelcome, like Jesus felt, as well as excluded, rejected and sometimes, as Jesus was, persecuted. It can be painful and enraging. And it’s okay to feel those things. It’s human and it’s natural, and sometimes those feelings should stir you to action on behalf of people and groups who are being persecuted! But, ultimately, Jesus asks us to be free of the need to be loved, liked or approved of. And to be confident in who you are. 
Notice that Jesus is also free of the need to punish. James and John wanted to “call down fire from heaven” to destroy the Samaritans who rejected Jesus. But Jesus “rebukes” his disciples for this. That’s not his way. He is free of the need for revenge. So be like Jesus. Be free.

Finally, be hopeful. The life of Christian discipleship is not simply a hard row to plow, it’s not simply tough, it’s not simply a chore. As St. Paul says in today’s reading, “For freedom Christ set us free.” Isn’t that beautiful? The Christian life is not some terribly burden or “yoke” as St. Paul says, echoing the plow imagery of Jesus. No, it’s an invitation to live in freedom. Just as Elijah covered Elisha with his cloak, so all of us, LGBT or straight, who accept Jesus’s invitation are wrapped under what the theologian Barbara Reid calls the “protective cloak of his spirit.” We live in freedom. And in joy!

And in hope too!”

[...]

“These readings, so ancient, so different, so seemingly far away, are actually tailor made for us today, during Pride Weekend for all of us who are called to encounter God. In these readings we hear God say to us: Be tough, be free, be hopeful. Be proud to be Catholic. And for my LGBT brothers and sister and siblings, be the LGBT Catholic whom you are called to be by Jesus Christ himself.”

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Benedict XVI clarifies whom is the pope.






“The Pope is one, Francis.”

— Benedict XVI, 22 June 2019


Benedict XVI said these words in interview that took place on 22 June 2019 with Massimo Franco and will be published in Corriere della Sera 7, 28.06.2019. This statement was reported in Incontro con Ratzinger Un filo di voce ma parole lucide per rassicurare, Corriere della Sera, 27.06.2019 as well as in Benedetto XVI: il Papa è uno, Francesco. L'unità è più forte delle divisioni, Vatican News, 27 June 2019.




Monday, June 17, 2019

Fr. Mario returns to address Viganò’s allegations against Francis


Learn how Christ is cleansing his church by purification of the modernists, so we get pure modernism!



Fr. Mario can’t wait until priestly celibacy is done away with so that women can have a voice in his modernist church!

The uncomfortable truth...

It’s obvious that Fr. Mario doesn’t understand that modernism is the problem and logically leads to homosexuality and pederasty in the Novus Ordo.

The blind leading the blind.



More ‘wisdom’ from Fr. Mario:

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

A Holy Land Pilgrimage with Taylor Marshall


(click images to enlarge)


Holy Land Pilgrimage, New Saint Thomas Institute, 206 Tours - Pilgrimages, 30 May 2019



The company Taylor Marshall is using, like himself, is into numerology this time it’s based upon the false apparitions of Medjugorje.

About 206 Tours, 206 Tours, 3 June 2019


‘Tay’ tells you all about the pilgrimage



This is your “Spiritual Leader” on the Holy Land Pilgrimage


Easter Harlem Shake, On This Rock, Fr. John Hollowell’s blog, 31 March 2013



Special Guests: Dr. Taylor Marshall’s Family...


Learn the meaning of Christmas  to ask for presents and wear immodest clothing!



This isn’t one-time errant immodesty...






The handbook for the pilgrimage...



Marshall’s book ‘The Crucified Rabbi’ will be the basis for explaining Christ’s life and the Holy Land on this pilgrimage. In this book Marshall rightfully point outs “there is a vast difference between the biblical Judaism of Moses and the Talmudic Judaism of the rabbis in the centuries after Christ” but then proceeds to ignore this for the remainder of the book. He quotes from a censored version of the Talmud, takes rabbis at their word going so far as to take rabbinical concepts with no relation to the New Testament and proceed to create them out of thin air.  One example is the kippah worn by Talmudic Jews. Marshall explains this was done by Jews out of piety and imitation of the priests of the Temple hence Catholic clergy wear it, “because it is a sign that a man is wholly dedicated to the Lord.” As we have demonstrated on this blog quoting numerous rabbis, wearing a kippah is not biblical, it is Talmudic, and an outward anti-Christian sign. Besides the redacted Talmud, the author looks to a member of Opus Judei, protestant Bibles, rabbis, Maimonides, Jewish historians, and a Russian Orthodox priest to explain who Jesus was, the Sacraments, and the Church.  Reading it one also sees that Marshall uses errors of Protestantism. In fact, his book is so filled with errors, it would take a book itself to correct them all.  It should be apparent that with the few examples we gave and the screenshots above that Taylor Marshall doesn’t grasp much of the Catholic Faith or its practice. This shouldn’t be a surprise as in the book’s Acknowledgements he thanks — Hebrew-Catholics, Opus Judei members, and more than a few of the hierarchy caught up in the sexual crimes recently brought to light.  It suffices to say that this is not a book one should read much less use on a pilgrimage to explain anything about the Catholic Faith.



Related:

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Dr. Bob & the Zionist Alt-Right





(click image to enlarge)

Bob Shillman - Robert Mercer - Nina Rosenwald Alternative Media Network Infographic, The World Needs This Man, (8 March 2019).

Chabad rabbi Levi Raskin presenting an award to Dr. Bob Shillman and his wife Mao Shillman for years of sponsoring the annual Rancho Santa Fe Chanukah Chabad-Lubavitcher menorah.

The Pope Video — Season 4 Episode 6


The priest as a social worker...



...remember Francis said, ‘the poor are living moving tabernacles!’


Turning the Novus Ordo into an NGO one priest at a time!

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Francis gets a Hebrew Bible


Hebrew University’s President, Prof. Menahem Ben Sasson, presented Pope Francis with a special Hebrew University edition of the Hebrew Bible. “The gift we bring is the Hebrew University Bible, identical to the one we gave to Pope John Paul II during his visit to Jerusalem fifteen years ago. Based on extensive Hebrew University scholarship and the Aleppo Codex, this is the most accurate version of the Bible in existence,” said Prof. Ben-Sasson.



Francis eagerly accepting the Jerusalem Crown — Hebrew University Bible from Menahem Ben Sasson.


We have to laugh at the above quote, “the Hebrew University Bible... is the most accurate version of the Bible in existence” from Hebrew University’s President, Prof. Menahem Ben Sasson. We couldn’t come up with a finer example of what chutzpah is.  Before we explain, let’s examine what the publisher’s website, Jerusalem Crown: The Bible of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, has to say about the Hebrew University Bible.  On the English index page on reads,

The Jerusalem Crown is a new, revised, and accurate Bible, based on the Aleppo Codex (Keter Aram Zova), the most accurate text of the Bible, on which Maimonides relied in his exposition of the laws governing the writing of Torah scrolls in his codification of Jewish law (Mishneh Torah). 
The Jerusalem Crown is based on the latest studies of the biblical text by Rabbi Mordechai Breuer, recipient of the 1999 Israel Prize in Bible Scholarship. It has been recognized as the official Bible of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the Israeli parliament (the Knesset). 


This is true enough in several senses but not in it being an “accurate Bible [...] based on the most accurate text of the Bible.”  The Aleppo Codex was written by the scribe Shlomo Ben Boya’a and had the vowels, the cantillation marks, and the Masoretic commentary added by Aharon Ben Asher, a Masorete.  It was dedicated to the Karaite community of Jerusalem.  Today scholars are still debating whether or not the Ben Asher family were Karaites.  Karaite Judaism is a branch of Judaism which follows only the Tanakh and not the Talmud. Talmudic Jews consider Karaites to be heretics.  This is humorous because the Rambam or Maimonides is the most influential Talmudic scholar of all-time.

On the page, Aleppo Codes (Haketer), it continues,

The Aleppo Codex, now known in Hebrew as Keter Aram Zova, is the oldest and most famous manuscript of the Bible. Written in Tiberias in the year 920, it has become the most authoritative biblical text in Jewish culture. The most famous halakhic authority to rely on it was Maimonides, in his exposition of the laws governing the writing of Torah scrolls in his codification of Jewish law (Mishneh Torah). After its completion, the Keter was brought to Jerusalem.


So why would Maimonides use this Aleppo Codex?  The reason is simple enough.  It writes out to the best of its ability anything which prophecies the coming of Jesus the Christ.  It is a Masoretic text written by rabbis who denied Jesus the Christ. It is for this reason that it is the official Bible of the Israeli Knesset and used to swear in Talmudic officials such as the presidents of the State of Israel.


Presidents of Israel taking the oaths of allegiance on it.

 President Shimon Peres

President Moshe Katzav


In the Companion Volume which comes with the Jerusalem Crown, Menahem Ben-Sasson writes,


The key phrase is, “encouraging Jewish studies... developing them by engaging in research, instruction, and any other pursuit that might advance and disseminate them.”  The Hebrew University Bible Project also uses the Talmud and midrashim to flesh out their book.  When your starting point is the denial of Jesus as the Christ and you take from works which share this theme, you’ll end up with something which doesn’t resemble the text from which Jesus the Christ and the early church quoted. The Masoretic Bible is so different that the Samaritans consider it a rabbinical forgery. Of course to the Talmudic Jews, Samaritans are heretics who get put in a special class all their own.

Let’s briefly examine Maimonides, who gave “the final stamp of sacred authorization” to the text “in the Misshneh” was.  Maimonides wrote the Mishneh Torah and Guide of the Perplexed and is considered a great halachic authority.  He is promoted as a supporter of inter-faith relations and ahead of his time as Rabbi Abraham Skorka said, “The masterly opinion of Maimonides is that the human being in his present condition is indeed able to construct a reality of dialogue and of peace.”  Often times you’ll hear him quoted but what the listener doesn’t know is that these are from redacted and censored texts.  The true Maimonides is that he believed it OK to commit sodomy with children, believed gentiles were not human, was the premier anti-black racist, was a master in the field of situational ethics, believed every word in the Bible had a hidden meaning which contained the real truth, wrote God gave Jews a divine mandate to kill the wicked followers of Christ, ad nauseam.

Francis is a huge fan of Maimonides and attended a special exhibit on him in 2004 in Buenos Aires.  While there, “Cardinal Bergoglio praised Maimonides open attitude as well as his understanding those of other faiths and praised the exhibit for demonstrating this.”  Only four years later in 2008 Cardinal Bergoglio happily accepted the ‘Maimonides Award for Inter-religious Dialogue’ from Rabbi Skorka. It should come as no surprise why Francis was so excited to receive this Hebrew Bible from Prof. Menahem Ben Sasson on 26 January 2015. The book will undoubtably help Francis turn St. Peter’s into a synagogue and the Vatican a shtetl.  All the proof you need is to be found in Francis’ preface to the La Bibbia dell’Amicizia: Brani della Torah/Pentateuco commentati da ebrei e cristiani. In it Francis, “implies that Catholicism is anti-semitic at it’s core when he states, “we have in the past nineteen centuries of Christian anti-Judaism”. His diagnosis for this, “Christian anti-Judaism” is “to work harder to ask for forgiveness and to repair the damage caused by misunderstandings.” How does he propose, “repair[ing] the damage”? Why by simply adopting Jewish, “value$, traditions, and ideas”. He then states that these Jewish value$ are inviolable and necessary for “constructive dialogue.” ”  Then he concludes by writing that, “It is vitally important for Christians to discover and promote knowledge of Jewish tradition in order to be able to understand themselves authentically.”

If one were to adopt these Jewish value$ and become a Noahide, what rewards could one expect according to Maimonides and the rabbis?  The reward would be being subordinate to Israel on this earth and when they died it would be going to Hell for all eternity. How wonderful!  Why then are outfits such as ChurchMilitant, LifeNews, and LifeSiteNews openly advocating for the adoption of the noahide laws or those who support the noahide laws?  They are doing nothing more than following the not so occult desires of Francis.

It should come as no surprise that Francis was happy to receive the Maimonides approved Hebrew Bible for Francis likely shares Maimonides’ belief that Jesus wasn’t the Messiah, he just imagined himself the Messiah.  Francis is doing everything in his power to transform the office of the papacy, destroy the Church, and wipe out what it means to be Catholic.  How long until he also shares Maimonides’ belief that Catholicism is a stumbling block and all those who worship Jesus the Christ deserved to be executed?  His perversion and inversion of Jesus the Christ and His Church will not end, sadly we fear, until he draws his last breathe.


(See 52 seconds mark for the giving of the gift to Francis.)




Opus Dei Watch




The website akaCatholic has been publishing the research of Randy Engel on Opus Dei.  Both have done a great service to English language readers as it is difficult to find honest reporting in English on Opus Dei as the personal prelature keeps a tight lid on what is written about them through their full spectrum dominance of the religious medias.  While we at Call Me Jorge... don’t agree with everything Randy Engel writes, she should be given kudos for shining the light on Opus Dei.



Previous Opus Dei exposes by Randy Engel:

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Mormonism is kabbalah for noahides


Kabbalah in a Surprising Place: Joseph Smith’s Engagement with Jewish Mysticism




Joseph ben Abraham Ha-Levi, Joseph Smith, kabbalah, Menasseh Ben Israel, lost tribes of Israel, mormons, sephardic, Nauvoo, Shimon bar Yochai, Zohar, Moses de León, sefirot, Ein Sof, Theurgy, three levels of divine realm, emanations, Joshua Seixas, Hebrew, Oberlin College, Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch, Book of Mormon, Book of Nephi, Talmud, Renaissance, rabbis, noahide, freemason, supremacist, Ecclesia and Synagoga, occult, esoteric, hermeticism, Solomonic knowledge, Egypt, plagiarism, Johann Andreas Eisenmenger, Entdecktes Judenthum, Gershom Scholem, Jewish mysticism, Alexander Neibaur, King Follett Discourse, nature of Mormon god, anthropomorphism, apotheosis, becoming gods, resurrection, men are gods, Mantua Zohar, Doctrine and Covenants, modern Judaism, J.P. Stehelin, Rabbinical literature : or the traditions of the Jews contained in their Talmud and other mystical writings,


More on the Mormons:

Monday, May 20, 2019

Could the FSSPX please explain why they are using images from Medjugorje to promote a Marian Retreat when they believe the apparitions of Medjugorje to be false?


(click image to enlarge)

Marian Retreat, FSSPX.uk, 13 MAY - 18 MAY ST. SAVIOUR'S 
HOUSE, KNOWLE, BRISTOL BS4 2DU


On March 19th & 24th of 2017, the official English language website of the FSSPX published two articles, Not Real Apparitions in Medjugorje & Medjugorje: the Case, that stated that the apparitions of Medjugorje were false.  Fast-forward to May 13th of 2019, the SSPX of the United Kingdom promotes their Marian Retreat with three superimposed images, all from the false apparitions of Medjugorje. (see above)  When FSSPX News and its associated sites were launched the Society gave the reasoning behind it, “In an effort to increase the quality, consistency, and frequency of Catholic communication, the SSPX is launching a new website.”  Does the right hand know what the left hand is doing in the Society?  Is the SSPX making modernist Rome traditional Catholic or is modernist Rome’s modernism rubbing off on the FSSPX?  Are their members really that ignorant of the photo they grabbed off the internet to promote their Marian Retreat? What’s going on? 


The Marian images from the false apparitions go by many names: Our Lady of Tihaljina, Our Lady of Medjugorje, Our Lady of Grace, Queen of Peace, Mother of the Redeemer, etc...

Do a search for those names and these images turn up.


 The left image in photo used by SSPX.

The center image used by SSPX in the photo.

 Very similar statue to the image on the right in the still.

Very similar statue to the image on the right in the still.


*Thanks to NovusOrdoWatchLifesound22Ed on twitter for bringing this to our attention.

“The Most Consistent Law of Nature Is Anti-Semitism”

The Moral Insanity of Judaic Racial Supremacy



‘We are connected to god and the goyim are not!’


Related:

Coming soon to the FSSPX?


(click images to enlarge)

Will Bishop Vitus Huonder bring his value$ along as he moves to the SSPX District House?




On Monday, May 20, 2019, Pope Francis relieved Bishop Vitus Huonder of his duties as Bishop of the Diocese of Chur (Switzerland), while appointing an administrator with a view to the election of his successor. 
According to an intention that he stated long ago, Bishop Huonder is retiring to a house of the Society of Saint Pius X. The one sole purpose of this step is to dedicate himself to prayer and silence, to celebrate the traditional Mass exclusively, and to work for Tradition, the only way of renewing the Church. 
The Society of Saint Pius X appreciates Bishop Huonder’s courageous decision and rejoices to be able to provide him with the spiritual and priestly surroundings that he desires so deeply. May this example be followed by others, so as to “restore everything in Christ”. 

May 20, 2019 

His Excellency Vitus Huonder - Bishop Emeritus of Chur
Don Davide Pagliarani - Superior General of the SSPX

Joint communiqué of Bishop Huonder and Father Pagliarani, FSSPXNews, 20 May 2019



Bp. Huonder is a typical Novus Ordo of the liberal strain who occasionally makes a decision which appears Catholic.  He is big fan of interreligious dialogue and a friend of Moslem and Talmudic Jew alike.  Thinks highly of ‘Nostra Aetate’, is a member of the Jewish / Roman - Catholic Dialogue Commission, implemented the ‘Day of Judaism’ in Switzerland, wrote his doctoral thesis in 1975 - Israel Sohn Gottes: Zur Deutung eines alttestamentlichen Themas in der jüdischen Exegese des Mittelalters (Israel Son of God: On the interpretation of an Old Testament theme in the Jewish exegesis of the Middle Ages), ad nauseum.


More of what Huonder value$...

 Female altar boys.

 How Catholic, how traditional!

 Nice pants.

 Interfaith fun with Anglican priestess, Adèle Kelham.

Nothing says Novus Ordo Missae like girls as altar boys!

 He should fit right in with the SSPX.

Delegating his Novus Ordo duties.

Communion in the hand and immodest dress.



The SSPX already shares a few of these value$...




Sharing sanctuary with Novus Ordo presiders.

The American SSPX HQ is a big fan of females in pants.

Adoration of Novus Ordo host at a cathedral.


Vitus Huonder’s goal in retiring to the SSPX
 
20 May 2019 letter from Bp. Huonder.

Bp. Huonder, “In the spirit of Pope Francis, I will strive myself to contribute to the unity of the Church, not to marginalize, but to discern, accompany and help integrate.” (That sounds an awful lot like it came from Amoris laetitia, chapter eight – Accompanying, discerning and integrating weakness.)

Gene Simmons Gives Pentagon Briefing

“America Is The Promi$ed Land For Everybody”...



...but, “This [Israel] is home.”



He’s a male even thought he wears high heels and make-up.


KISS’ emblem with the ‘ss’ resembling the Waffen SS.  Throught the years, Simmons has denied that KISS for ‘Knights in Satan’s Service’, ‘Kinder SS’, and ‘Kids in Satan’s Service’.

Gene Simmons born Chaim Witz at Rambam Hospital in 1949 in Tirat Carmel, Haifa, Israel dressed as his alter ego in the band ‘The Demon’ blowing fire.

Throwing the devil horns dressed as The Demon.

Raising money not for US soldiers but Israeli soldiers.

At Yad Vashem tribute.

Chaim Witz is fluent in Hebrew.

Chaim paying homage to the Indian goddess of Kali by sticking his tongue out.

Sunday, May 19, 2019

No joke! — Francis joins the Rome Foreign Press Corps


(click image to enlarge)



It’s official, Francis is now a coprophiliac 
coprophagist purveyor of #fakenews.



Selfie Sunday — Talmudic Jewess Edition


(click image to enlarge)




On Taking a Selfie with Pope Francis by Jenn Lindsay
Recently I attended an audience with Pope Francis with the International Council of Christians and Jews. It was my second audience, as I had also gained access to the Vatican’s elaborate reception room through the Pontifical Institute for the Study of Arabic and Islam.

The journey into the heart of the Vatican evoked the Christian theological principle of advent, as we advanced through the Borgia courtyard and drew higher up the staircases into the lavishly painted coatroom and excitement mounted buzzingly amidst the group. I followed the sea of bobbing yarmulkes through the ornate hallways. In the reception room they asked us not to take pictures, but of course when Pope Francis entered everyone stood and went bananas with their cell phone cameras, iPads, camcorders, etc.

One of the conference leaders read a statement to Pope Francis thanking him for his time, and three gifts were presented, one jointly to Pope Francis and Rabbi Abraham Skorka, a member of the ICCJ with whom he wrote On Heaven and Earth, a book on Jewish-Christian dialogue, back when he was still Bergoglio, Archbishop of Argentina.

After the presentation of gifts, Pope Francis rose from his simple chair—not the ornate throne that his predecessors have used—and faced the audience in front of a microphone. He welcomed the group to Rome, speaking in Italian: “Here in Rome, we also find the most ancient Jewish community in Western Europe, whose origins can be traced to the time of the Maccabees. Christians and Jews therefore have lived together in Rome for almost two thousand years, even though their relations in the course of history have not been without difficulty.” He invoked the conference theme, “50 Years since Nostra Aetate,” the Vatican II declaration of respect for non-Catholic religions, which helped Christians and Jews begin to heal the “fragmented humanity, mistrust and pride” that divided them for 2,000 years. The Pope spoke of how Christians and Jews have their differences —“The Christian confessions find their unity in Christ; Judaism finds its unity in the Torah”— but together they “confess one God…And he, in his infinite goodness and wisdom, always blesses our commitment to dialogue.”

Then the Vatican guards announced that Pope Francis would take time to greet everybody in the room personally. There were about 250 people. A few months ago, when I attended the audience with the Pontifical Institute for the Study of Arabic and Islam, the pope only greeted the speakers and the bigwigs, so I was surprised and thrilled. For an hour, Pope Francis took the time to greet every single person in the room, which, in this heat, under those vestments, was very generous. In my opinion, this choice reflects a deeper friendship and investment in the relationship between Catholics and Jews, which is consistent with the Church since the Second Vatican Council. At the Council, special commissions were established to develop and support this relationship, as it was recognized that Christians and Jews share a common ancestry and have been notably in conflict throughout Western history.

From the sidelines, I watched Pope Francis continue to greet people tirelessly, animated and attentive with every last person. When Rabbi Skorka approached Papa Francesco, they embraced passionately—they are old friends, joking and smiling, each joyful in the reunion. They also happen to be religious leaders of different religions—so their friendship is symbolic as well as genuine.

The guards formed lines, row by row, and I drew closer to Pope Francis. I would receive, at most, about a minute with him, so I got ready to ask if he would take a selfie with me. I rehearsed my line: Lei può fare un selfie con me? When the line emptied and I was suddenly face-to-face with Pope Francis, staring into his gentle face, I had a Beatlemania blackout moment. I joyfully cried out CIAO!! to him, instead of the more formal Italian salve. He chuckled at me and reached for my hand.

I asked Pope Francis if we could take a selfie together and he respectfully looked at his official photographer for permission. Luckily the photographer was totally into it. I believe they took pictures of us taking a selfie and other people took photos of them taking photos of us taking selfies. Somewhere in the cosmos there is an infinite regression of my selfie with Pope Francis.

My impressions: He is very sweet, soft spoken, grandfatherly, seems tired, has lost weight since I saw him in February, is shorter than I expected, and has the softest hand I’ve ever shaken.

Amidst the looming Swiss Guards, the encounter was a blur. Still, afterward I glowed for hours. It was thrilling to follow the selfie as it exploded on Facebook, almost 300 people liking it and sharing it within hours.

The next day I had a strange feeling. Was it post-popum depression? I had guilt pangs about asking Pope Francis for a selfie, like I had objectified him or used him. I worried I contributed to his depletion, that I just took and didn’t give anything. Not that saying one sentence would have been more substantive. But for some reason I felt that I profaned him! My Christian friend Kristen Leigh Southworth straightened me out. She texted me breathlessly, No way, Pope F is un-profane-able!!! He is a down-to-Earth pope—that’s like his whole thing….He is a true vicar of Christ. Jesus would totally have let you do a selfie.

In a moment of Jewish-Christian dialogue that I cherish, my brilliant friend Kristen got to the theological heart of my ambivalence about taking a selfie with the vicar of Christ:

“It’s hard to have a genuine experience of anything, but especially something particularly special or ‘sacred’ or once-in-a-lifetime. Real holiness always breaks through the mundane. And when you want or expect to have a big holy moment, it always turns out to have a little mundane mixed in there. And that can be disappointing. Like…really, that’s it? This was supposed to be major and life changing and holy! So you can start to think, maybe I did something wrong? I should have done it differently… Been more present to the moment… Something…. But what? I probably would have thought up some intelligently effusive thing to say to him in my head, and when I got up there I would have chickened out and it would have come out all garbled and inaudible and I only would have mumbled something like, “I like Jesus and I like you too.” And he would smile kindly and shake my hand and I would have walked away in some sort of daze, wishing I had kept my mouth shut and taken a selfie with him.

There is nothing wrong with being a fan. That’s why he’s there. That’s literally the reason for the pope to exist. To be an emblem. A face. The vicar of Christ. Someone for people to see. He really gets that. That’s why he goes out to the people, the way Jesus did. The point is for him to both be on the pedestal, and to flip it.”

My selfie with Pope Francis has been clicked and liked round the world. My parents sent it to all their friends. I’ve been in touch with people I haven’t talked to for years, all of whom are radiating with excitement about suddenly being one degree of separation from this fine public figure. This selfie drew forth from my dear Kristen a hot surge of wisdom and insight.

I think it has paid for itself.

Pope Francis was dedicated and generous enough to personally greet all 250 people in his reception room that summer afternoon, though he looked depleted about halfway through our group. When I went to www.photo.va to download official photos of taking a selfie with him, I noted that ours was only one of three audiences the same day. On the photographer’s back calendar, there were multiple official events, audiences, addresses, visits, trips, and interviews scheduled every single day for years. It makes sense that he looks tired. I imagine this valiant, beautiful, earnest 79.5-year-old is pushing himself beyond depletion to fulfill the holy burdens of his sacred office.

Knowing this, seeing Pope Francis up close, sharing a spontaneous moment of humor and co-creation together, and watching his effort to be fully present for all who approached him, makes especially poignant the final words of his address to the International Council of Christians and Jews: “May the Lord bless you and keep you in his peace. I ask you please to pray for me. Thank you.”

On Taking a Selfie with Pope Francis, State of Formation, (13 July 2015).




More Selfie Sundays: