Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Spinning in Place

A study in quadruple-dealing:
The new Pope - he still seems that way to me, new - just doesn't have the extraordinary charisma and telegenic appeal of his predecessor. Is that sort of thing necessary? In America, it is. They dig that sort of thing. (They also need hope, these days.)
You read this and you ask yourself: is he taking a shot at the Pope?

No, no, of course not. Benedict just seems "new" is all ... If anything, this is more a bit of praise for the last Pope. How charismatic and telegenic he was.

But neither charisma (in the completely areligious sense given the word here) nor, erm, telegenesis are Christian virtues.

Of course not. But Americans can't be expected to understand that. So it's important that a Pope be able to appeal to them on their level.

Oh, I see. So you're taking a shot at Americans!

No, no! Far from it. Rather, such is my concern for Americans that I want the Pope to give them hope. They need it so desperately, don't you know.

What: as in faith, hope, and charity? The three theological virtues? But that's exactly what he's giving them.

No. I mean, HOPE.

Oh, sorry. The audacious kind. Gotcha. You getting this, your Holiness? Jesus?