Religion, in addition to giving spiritual sustenance, has always given us good theater. Take, for example, the beatification of Pope John Paul II. Pope for most of my lifetime, he always struck me as a good guy. I disagreed with most of his stances on moral issues, but, at least he was nowhere near as bizarre (or conservative) as Pope Josef Ratzinger (aka Benedikt XVI).
So, the reason that they’re sainting the old Pope? A French nun claims that after praying to John Paul after his death, her case of Parkinson’s disease vanished. Reports recently indicated that her illness has since returned, and that she may have been incorrectly diagnosed to begin with, but why let a little detail like that get in the way of the Roman Catholic Church? It never has before, why start concerning oneself with such details now?
And it gets better. Guess who’s going to be in attendance at the beatification ceremony. If you guessed Robert Mugabe, bloodthirsty and nutso dictator of Zimbabwe (and devoted Catholic, apparently), you guessed right. Despite the European Union’s ban on letting Mugabe enter any member state, the Vatican, which is not a part of the EU, has agreed to let him in. Mugabe’s presence, even if comical for its self importance and hypocrisy, is highly inconsistent with the old Pope’s past political stances. Were he alive, I doubt John Paul II would allow Mugabe through the door, and rightfully so.