I just knew Benedict would get that pope job. One look at the guy and you could smell the namked ambition. The way he was traipsing around the Vatican in long flowing robes, lighting everyone’s incense and telling them how fabulous they looked in the fullness of God’s grace, you just knew: total operator. That whole thing about being a “simple, humble worker in the vineyard of the Lord”? That’s Vatican talk for: I am here to crush you.
The editor, Jim Nelson, continues on. All in all, while it is very secular in scope, I found it respectful in a secular, modern, GQ way. Nelson, from his letter, mentions that he went to Catholic school and it didn’t sound like it was the most enjoyable place. He makes references to popes who I have no idea if the reference makes sense or not. I’m not an expert on Church history, but after I finish packing, I’m going to be looking up a handful of things to figure out if GQ just dissed the Catholic faith or made a valid point on what Pope Benedict XVI could be like. I consider that a point in GQ’s column.
To look at this from a broader point of view, it is important to look at the opinions of everyone regarding our religion. Not our faith, but our religion. As Nelson says, “I’m dimly afraid of the ones who look mean and grizzled, who appear half-annoyed by their own holiness- the ones who swat the crowds away from their windows.” I would hope the Cardinals did not elect Benedict because he can pleases a crowd, but we should remember that our faith is based, to the outside world, on how we portray it. “Preach the Gospel at all times and when needed, use words.”