#PopeReads: The Best on The Pope’s Visit From Around the Web
Each day during his trip, we’ll bring you some of our favorite stories about Pope Francis’ visit to the United States from other media outlets.
“Why Do We Care Whose Side the Pope Is On?,” Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone
I watched Pope Francis’ address to Congress on CNN. Immediately after, the anchors started scoring the debate. When the Pope invoked the Golden Rule, apparently, not every Republican stood up and applauded!
Matt Taibbi — who once wrote an article titled “52 Funniest Things About the Upcoming Death of the Pope” — says this “whose side is the pope on” commentary is pointless.
So the pope is here. His arrival has spawned a Drake/Meek Mill-style diss battle within the pundit class, pitting conservatives bemoaning the pope’s false prophecy against liberals swooning over his platitudinous anti-capitalism. It’s like the Colts-Jets game from Monday night. I can’t decide which side I want to lose more.
Yes, today’s #PopeReads is opening with a column skeptical on the Catholic Church’s moral position in the world and both Republicans’ and Democrats’ attempt to co-opt religion to make it seem like it’s on their “side.” Hey, as a great fictional Philadelphian once said, the world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows.
“Pope Francis and His Little Fiat,” John Cassidy, The New Yorker
As you may know, the Pope has been shuttled around in America in a Fiat. This is symbolic!
That’s where the Fiat 500L comes in. Back in July, 2013, Francis instructed Catholic priests to drive modest vehicles. ”It hurts me when I see a priest or nun with the latest-model car,” he said. ”You can’t do this. A car is necessary to do a lot of work, but, please, choose a more humble one. If you like the fancy one, just think about how many children are dying of hunger in the world.”
As someone who went to 12 years of Catholic school, I wanted to say “just think about how many children are dying of hunger in the world” to every priest I ever met with a fancy car. I couldn’t, but Pope Francis did it for me eventually! Thanks, Pontifex!
“Girl gives letter to pope, fears her parents will be deported,” Garrett W. Haake, WUSA-TV
Pope Francis paraded in Washington, D.C., yesterday. Out of that trip came this story:
Cruz, whose father lifted her over the barricades as Francis paraded down the Ellipse, told CBS and other news outlets she gave the pope the letter and illustration as a means of delivering a message:
“Pope Francis I want to tell you that my heart is sad. And I would like to ask you to speak with the President and the Congress in legalizing my parents because every day I am scared they will take them away from me,” Cruz told CBS News.
This little girl is literally trying to use Catholic guilt on the Pope! Has anyone tried that before? This is an impressive move. I’m not sure if the pope can change the GOP’s stance on illegal immigration, though.
“Pope Francis Visits Little Sisters of the Poor, Nuns in Obamacare Lawsuit,” Elizabeth Chuck and Tracy Connor, NBC News
The Pope visited the Little Sisters of the Poor, a group that is suing the administration over Obamacare rules that force it to cover birth control. What was the message?
Vatican spokesman Rev. Federico Lombardi told reporters that the pope’s visit was a “sign of support for” the nuns.
A nun with the Little Sisters say the Pope’s visit has “fortified” the nuns. That won’t help them in a court of law, however.
“The pope’s ‘ugly’ chair row is pathetic: what matters is what he says, not where he sits,” Jonathan Jones, The Guardian
Some people really hate the chair New York Catholics built for Pope Francis. No, really!
In a world of war and suffering when refugees are dying and governments failing in their human duties, it really is odd to get angry about a chair. But people have got cross about the plain wooden throne with white upholstering that New York’s Catholic community commissioned for Pope Francis. Apparently it is a sin against good design, a disgrace to the papal backside.
Here in Philadelphia, of course, even inmates at Curran-Fromhold built a chair for the pope to sit in. Honestly, that one looks pretty nice, however.
“Pope Francis’ Philadelphia visit won’t get rained on, forecaster says,” Tony Rhodin, LehighValleyLive.com
Are you worried about the weather this weekend? Don’t be, maybe!
A high pressure system currently over New England will protect the pope and a million followers, blocking the low’s path up the East Coast, Martrich said.
“It stays out to sea,” Matrich said. The region will be “be high and dry this weekend,” unless you’re going to the extreme South Jersey or Delaware shores, where you might get a passing shower, he said.
Clearly, that high-pressure system is a true believer.
“What Does the Pope Think About Technology? #It’sComplicated,” Issie Lapowsky, Wired
I am including this piece because of the fantastic quote near the end of it.
“With the selfie, in one moment he joins young people happily and without any scruple,” says Paul Elie. “He says, ‘You’re young. I’m 78. You’re American. I’m Argentinian, You’re a college student. I’m the Pope. Let’s all get together.”
I always appreciate a good defense of the selfie.