March 31, 2005

Pope Given Last Rites
— Ace

I have little to add, except space for commenting and prayers.

I have to say-- I'm sorry, it looks like I really picked the wrong day to be completely flip and humorous.

Posted by: Ace at 12:16 PM | Comments (34)
Post contains 40 words, total size 1 kb.

1 Of all the poor timing... Classic... You're on point Ace!

Posted by: fat kid at March 31, 2005 12:24 PM (yHxMk)

2 FNC -- Vatican is actively disputing this crap from CNN. Unfortunately, Michelle Malkin and others have been taken in also.

Posted by: recon at March 31, 2005 12:26 PM (xBrqg)

3 Terrible news, but sadly, not unexpected.

I at least hope that John Paul goes with the dignity we haven't always afforded others.

And when he's gone-- either today, or far from now-- I sincerely hope we see the media acknowledge the colossus that he was. He truly was one of the greatest figures of the 20th Century, not just spiritually, but politically and morally as well.

Hey, they did it for Reagan; maybe they'll honor the Pope as well.

The next pope, whomever and whenever he'll be, will have very large shoes to fill.

Dave at Garfield Ridge

Posted by: Dave at Garfield Ridge at March 31, 2005 12:26 PM (rV7Dk)

4 Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.

I am not a Catholic, but I can imagine the loss of the Pope, which seems imminent, must be roughly equivalent to the death of a president, or more personally, a cherished uncle.

But even beyond the personal loss being anticipated, and beyond the Pope's significance to Roman Catholics, we should all remember the pivotal role he played in the demise of the Soviet Union. It's been a long time, so we might tend to forget, but it was this Pope along with Reagan and Thatcher who undermined the last pillars of Soviet Communism.

Posted by: OCBill at March 31, 2005 12:26 PM (YOhqV)

5 Vatican is actively disputing this crap from CNN.

I can't even remember where I read this, and I don't even know how reliable the source was, but I was just reading that the Vatican has been, historically, rather sparing with the truth as regards the health of the Pontiff.

Posted by: ace at March 31, 2005 12:28 PM (Q6+G6)

6 By the way, the term "last rites" is a bit misleading. It's a sacrament performed for the seriously ill; it does not mean you're necessarily about to die. I had "last rites" once when I was hospitalized. My condition was a lot more serious than a hangnail, but there was no reason to think I wouldn't recover fully (as I did).

Posted by: SJKevin at March 31, 2005 12:28 PM (Sw8Cn)

7 I was watching Fox (of course) and they said they were expecting bad news, but didn't have any confirmation of such as was in that CNN report. As a Catholic, I pray for the man, but this is the eventual end to all Popes. If it is his time ... he has lived a very full life.

Posted by: carin at March 31, 2005 12:28 PM (obvcA)

8 Well, that will teach us all the true meaning of Catholic guilt.

Just b/c you don't think you're doing anything wrong doesn't mean you're not doing anything wrong.

Our Holy Father is truly one of the great men of the 20th century. May God grant him comfort and when he does slip these surly bonds may his soul speed to Heaven. God's Church, built upon the Rock of St. Peter, will survive as it has for nearly 2,000 years.

Il Papa has been in dire straights before now, though, and he may yet surprise the world.

Posted by: hobgoblin at March 31, 2005 12:29 PM (2da3S)

9 This Pope is a remarkable man. He was certainly instrumental with bringing down the Soviet Union.

I am really not trying to be flippant, who exactly gives the Pope last rites?

Posted by: at March 31, 2005 12:32 PM (1ZNvu)

10 The pope's role in bringing down the USSR was more significant than most realize. As I understand it, the pope informed the Soviets that if they cracked down on Solidarity, he would resign as pope and move back to Poland. That would have caused them some serious trouble, obviously; it's no idle threat, and it showed a lot of courage and principle.

I have my disagreements with the Catholic church and the pope, but I still believe he is a great man. He'll be gone soon; may he rest in peace.

Posted by: SJKevin at March 31, 2005 12:32 PM (Sw8Cn)

11 His life is a great testament to the goodness of his Church, and one of the few bright spots of the ugly twentieth century.

Posted by: See-Dubya at March 31, 2005 12:37 PM (mL2wb)

12 I will really miss this pope. When I was younger and more callow, I used to joke about the man in the pointy hat. When I became older I marvelled at the work that he had done in the Polish Resistance. Kind of liked the idea of a POPE who strangled Nazis with his bare hands at the tender age of thirteen. While I have often disagreed with the man, and have openly questionioned the ex cathedra rationale, I have never doubted his sincerety. I hope that this extreme unction is a prophylactic, rather than a Last Rites. The world will be poorer for his passing.

Posted by: pinky at March 31, 2005 02:10 PM (/xdEX)

13 This Pope will be remembered by many Ukrainians for his moral clarity during the Cold War. He was a Pope who spoke for the freedom and dignity of all.


Posted by: One Eyed Cat at March 31, 2005 02:17 PM (EwDpw)

14 It was me that said that ace, a few threads back. Damn short memory you got there.

(And for the record, I still think you should do that Dead Parrot post. Maybe I'm not afraid to say it because I'm a Catholic... Go to an Irish wake and you'll loosen up about death real quick - I've got STORIES!)

Good analogy, Kevin: Sacrament of the Sick is definately somewhere between hangnail and death's door. Doesn't really signify anything in particular.

And while some of the more orthodox priests will still deliver "Last Rites" in the old form, according to Vatican II and common practice, you can no longer receive the sacrament when you're definately dead. As I understood it (and I'm too young to know) extreme unction was commonly performed on dead bodies. Priests actually go to great pains now to avoid it.

Posted by: The Black Republican at March 31, 2005 04:40 PM (9VCzx)

15 ``I am really not trying to be flippant, who exactly gives the Pope last rites?''

Any priest can do this, just as any priest can hear the Pope's confession. (Yes, the Pope goes to confession just like the rest of us.)

Posted by: Annalucia at March 31, 2005 04:47 PM (uLvIn)

16 The Pope was 19 years old when the Germans invaded Poland, so I doubt he was out strangling Nazis at the tender age of 13. Cool story though.

Newsmax is saying that he is starting to do better, so hopefully he'll be with us for a while longer.

Posted by: Mark_D at March 31, 2005 05:07 PM (d38jD)

17 I"m so glad for this world that people, so many people, can still recognize the strength and greatness of faith. Our Holy Father--noy just an uncle, but a guiding light, may be a bit weaker to the eye, but never to the soul... even in death. And our Holy Father has allowed us to watch so no one can doubt-- the true dignity in dying.

Posted by: hownowcowgal at March 31, 2005 05:28 PM (IoYq3)

18 Old riddle, and completely inappropriate at this time...

Question: "Who's the second most important person in the Catholic church after the Pope?"

Answer: "Jesus."

You can hate me, but it's only funny 'cause it's true...

Posted by: RapidTransit at March 31, 2005 05:29 PM (huExq)

19 O.K. it's funny, sorta. But, if you think it's true than you haven't been to church lately, eh?

Posted by: hownowcowgal at March 31, 2005 05:41 PM (IoYq3)

20 Like any prejudicial stereotype RT, it's not the least bit true. If you knew any good Catholics, you'd know that. Might want to go out and meet one or two....

Then again, you might not know one if you saw one. Heck, I have a hard time finding them occasionally myself.

Posted by: The Black Republican at March 31, 2005 09:43 PM (9VCzx)

21 The Pope gets last rights from his own confessor (yes, even the Pope sins, though I can't imagine what they might be - boredom?). I forget who the fellow is at the moment, but a quick Google search ought to do it.

I'll miss the Holy Father when he goes. As has been said, he, Reagan and Thatcher were the true colossi of the late 20th century, their opponents no more than yapping poodles nipping at their ankles.

A quick prediction - when the Pope dies, expect a shrill chorus from the American media that the new Pope will have to be more "inclusive," "tolerant" and "open," which is simply lib-speak for "hey, guys, next time, pick somebody who isn't all - you know - so serious about that doctrine bit? I mean, come on - poverty? chastity? obedience? What ever happened to "follow your bliss," man?
And finally - I hope the new guy doesn't call himself John Paul III. I loved both men, but I always hated the stupid double-barrelled name.

Posted by: Christopher at April 01, 2005 02:48 AM (SjUPQ)

22 Whoops, one last thing. According to Fox, the Pope has received the Viaticum (jeez, I can just imagine what you pervs are thnking about that name!). It's a bit more than "last rites" - it includes Communion and absolution of sins, and is only given in the gravest of cases. It doesn't mean the Pope is going to die, but it does mean the Vatican thinks it's pretty damn serious.

Posted by: Christopher at April 01, 2005 02:58 AM (SjUPQ)

23 I was raised (and still am) Catholic. It looks like the pope's time is short, and it looks like he's as ready as anyone I've ever seen.
In Catholic school they tell you about the office of the pope, and what it means and what the pope is supposed to do and be like. It sounds very high-minded and impossible, but I think John Paul has fit the job description well.
Even for a conservative pope, John Paul had his liberal side (the death penalty, the war in Iraq). But he had a credibility to him that made me ache that the world wasn't yet as good as he hoped. He wasn't just playing to a constituency. He said things because he really felt them. I'm a conservative, but I'd hear his arguments any day. His idealism wasn't the silly idealism of the Left, but the idealism of a man who just knew we could do better, on every side.
I hope the next pope is as good as this one. I think the world will miss him and his sanity.

Posted by: Zorachus at April 01, 2005 07:22 AM (yJ5ul)

24 I am a "recovering Catholic" so I've met plenty of Catholics, good and bad. Yes, the Church is finally, after 2000 years, recognizing the importance of a more personal relationship with the Savior. Better late than never.

Posted by: RapidTransit at April 01, 2005 09:57 AM (huExq)

25 I see where you're coming from, RT. I've felt that way too. I've gone through IVCF and Campus Crusade and on and on. All after 12 years of Catholic school. But you're castigating the Catholic Church for not seeing things like the Protestants do.
Catholics believe that Jesus came for his people. A whole Church, not necessarily a group of individuals. True, if only one person needed Him, He'd have done the same thing. But as it is, He put together a body where everyone, the spiritual ones, the logical ones, and the emotional ones, can share His life, whether they feel like they "know" Him or not.

Posted by: Zorachus at April 01, 2005 06:44 PM (dKyKu)

26 For those that are interested, there is some good information to be found at the source of all things tied to the Church.

Posted by: KCTrio at April 01, 2005 07:52 PM (hT8GB)

27 RT:

I really would enjoy a good discussion of your views of the Church, because I have the opposite experience of yours. I converted five years ago, and was raised in an Episcopal household with parents that were virulently anti-Catholic. There are many things that both cradle Catholics and Protestants do not understand about the Church. They simply choose to believe what they think the Church's position is on a given issue. I have never met a priest or deacon that told me when or how I should pray to my Lord.

I can read my good old King James Bible, for instance, and it'll be the one I'll always read to the day I die. I'll turn to the Rhiems Bible for the Apocrypha, but for all other books, it's the King James. And yes, there are probably some idiot priests, deacons, RCIA leaders and such that say "you must do this or that;" but don't blast the messenger for screwing up the message. There's even plenty of room for debate within the Church.

But, please, let's do this on another thread. There are more than 70 million Catholics in this country that are very disheartened right now. And now is not the time to start getting into Catholic theology and the merits thereof. At least I would like to think so.

Posted by: KCTrio at April 01, 2005 08:02 PM (hT8GB)

28 "But, please, let's do this on another thread. There are more than 70 million Catholics in this country that are very disheartened right now. And now is not the time to start getting into Catholic theology and the merits thereof. At least I would like to think so."

Thank you very very much KC.

Posted by: Lipstick Dynamite at April 01, 2005 08:28 PM (1f7Hp)

29 Thank you, LD. That was very kind of you.

This reminds me of one of my favorite jokes told to me by a priest at my parrish (probably an old one, and I may not be getting it exactly correct):

Three Christians, a Southern Baptist, a Catholic and an Episcopalian enter Heaven. St. Peter is showing the three around the place, and the first spot they encounter is a lovely country club, complete with stately homes and a beautiful golf course. St. Peter tells the Episcopalian that it is there where she will find her place in Heaven. They walk a little farther, and they encounter a spartan looking set of housing, and St. Peter tells the Southern Baptist, "That is where you will find your place in Heaven." Well, across the way from the Southern Baptist place, there's a giant brick wall stretching hundreds of feet into the air. The Southern Baptist, Episcopalian and the Catholic look at St. Peter, dumbfounded, and ask him: "What's that big wall there for?"

St. Peter answers: "Oh, that's where the Catholics live, behind that wall. They think they are the only ones up here."

Posted by: KCTrio at April 01, 2005 08:47 PM (hT8GB)

30 A splendid collection of biographical information on JP II, for those that are interested.

Posted by: KCTrio at April 01, 2005 09:06 PM (hT8GB)

31 KC,
"Oh, that's where the Catholics live, behind that wall. They think they are the only ones up here."

In response to that joke, I prefer Queen Elizabeth the First's idea: "There is only one God and all the rest is just details"

But seriously, not to get all mushy or anything, your words were like balm to my soul after a day of reading nasty cracks against everything I was taught to revere.

Thank you.

Posted by: at April 01, 2005 09:45 PM (1f7Hp)

32 That last comment was by me.

Posted by: Lipstick Dynamite at April 01, 2005 09:48 PM (1f7Hp)

33 LD:

Thanks again for your kind comments. And also I quite like that quote from QEI; very nice.

Let me give you a little bit of information to flush out what I mentioned to RT to put my personal experiences into perspective.

I got engaged to a...Catholic woman (the horror!). I realized at that moment that my upbringing would really put a damper on things, and I'd better learn right quick to get some tolerance of all things Catholic before this marriage started, or it'd get off on the wrong track from the start.

So, privately, without my fiancee's knowlege, I met every Saturday for one hour with a very well-known Monseigner in my community (he's very busy, trust me) to seek his advice (this busy Monseigner spending time with me really softened my heart).

He said that the easiest way to get this bias out of me would be to go through the mass, step by step, and explain things to me. That process debunked just enough bias for me to get most of it out of my system. After all, I'd agreed to raise my children Catholic and have a Catholic ceremony. I was honor-bound to do this. This whole deprogramming process took about six weeks.

So, after 10 years of marriage and 3 kids, I converted, on my own volition. That's when I learned the profound wonder of the Church. No, I didn't convert for family harmony. You'll never make it through 8 months of RCIA with that motive. And I did this during the height of the scandals involving priests.

So here's the rub: Perhaps there's a way that we can correspond about anything you wish regarding things Catholic. Let the discussion unfold however it goes. I don't think a thread devoted to such a thing would fit on this site, but there's no reason why we couldn't do it somewhere.

Any ideas?

Posted by: KCTrio at April 02, 2005 06:23 AM (hT8GB)

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