Ubi Est Habemus Papam

DSCF0361The BBC News page has standard categories: Business, Politics, Health, Education – none suitable to report on the papal election, its progress and outcome. There are also categories for Technology, Science and Environment, Sport, equally unsuitable. Will they report under Entertainment and Arts or Magazine, I wonder?

Maybe it’ll be under Also in the News.

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The Thunder of Joy

DSCF0223The pontiff, the media across the board keeps telling us, the pontiff, they write, the pontiff shocked the world.

Have you been shocked by the papal resignation?

I have not. Surprised, yes. Astonished, yes. Thinking to myself this is the smartest thing the man’s done, yes. For this, and for this only, I respect him.

I am shocked how much of the media, through poor choice of a single word, or through a deliberate sick choice of a single word, creates the illusion that mankind is in despair. According to them, we are now a desperate, leaderless, horror-struck flock of lamb. For all I know, an old man who chooses to speak in Latin, who sees no issues blessing weapons but has nothing but an apology to offer for child abuse, who struggles to respect women, gay people, those who believe in something else, someone else, or nothing at all, who disagrees with contraception, prays for the poor while sitting on vast wealth, well, such a person does well to withdraw into private prayer, hidden from the eyes of the public.

Let him pray in private for the good old days of the dark ages to come back. Meanwhile us people of the 21st century can only hope for a modern, young, forward looking, tolerant pope. A black gay Buddhist red-haired single mother of mixed Muslim-Jewish descent might fit the bill.

I’m pretty sure that the stoke of lighting which hit St. Peter’s cathedral on the day of the announcement of the resignation was a thunder of joy by the Big Cheese himself. Or, more likely, it was just a lighting strike hitting the tallest building in the area.


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Roman Beauty

EaselA new painting has been finished; a Roman Beauty that we admired and photographed in Rome, Museo Nazionale Roma, on the day after Pope John Paul II died.

I am pretty pleased with this one; it has all light and shaddow that I wanted it to have, and it is a fairly close resemblance of the real thing. It is always very nice to finish a painting, but finishing one that hasn’t taken weeks and weeks, but only a couple of hours, is even more rewarding.

This past weekend in a nutshell: One painting finished, a new one started, some household chores done, two garden parties attended, and been to an amazing production of Schiller’s Mary Stuart in the Donmar Warehouse. Pretty good weekend, ey?