Wednesday, April 20, 2005

They don't want a saint. They want a Santa Claus

That's the impression I get after watching TV commentators discuss the new Pope.

But it helps to remember that the press is not in Rome for any reasons having to do with faith or world leadership. They are there because the rituals, flowing robes and historic architecture make good TV. (If they cared about religion, we'd hear about Falwell's health. If they cared about international events, we'd hear about the UN scandal.) They're covering the story with the intellectual heft one would muster to cover Princess Di's wedding -- and for them all this talk about sin, resurrection, and morality is just a buzz-kill. So the MSM reveals itself to be shallow. And terribly isolated: they apparently think the Pope leads a church comprised only of Americans living in Manhattan and DC. And they frame their discussion about the new Pope in political terms because that's the only reference they have. They really should get out more.

As for the new Pope, I'm excited by him. Or as excited as a Protestant girl can be. He speaks often of the need to "bear fruit" and yesterday when he described himself as "a humble worker in God's vineyard," it struck me that this man wants results. If JPII was a fisherman of souls, BXVI might be a cultivator of souls. And that would be good news.

No comments: