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...a sweatshop of moxie

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

God Be With U

For whatever reason, all I have to do is remember this story, to start laughing uncontrollably.

Ahead of the World Youth Day conference in Sydney, Australia, comes word that Pope Benedict XVI will be sending out his first ever mobile phone sms to the assembled youth.

It reads:

"Young friend, God and his people expect much from u because u have within you the Fathers supreme gift: the Spirit of Jesus - BXVI."

I think it's a combination of imagining the Pope furiously texting with both his thumbs, like any Crackberry addict; his snappy usage of "u" for you; and his casual signoff, "BXVI".

(It's like you almost expect an extra little something after it, like maybe "BXVI Diddy")

Believe me, I am not just being irreverent, so much as pleasantly surprised at how sweet this man is -- how much he tries in his own shy little way, to be relevant, and to engage the youth he so evidently loves to interact with.

Far from being the cold, reactionary, ex-Nazi intellectual ogre he was predicted to be (mainstream media as ever misreading a Conservative for their own ends), he has quietly established himself as his own man with his own endearing qualities, which are human and therefore, excusable.

Today, after 3 years of sometimes seeing a photo of the late John Paul the Great and having to catch myself, as my throat constricts and I suddenly feel a wave of weepiness come over me, a similar phenomenon is occuring with Benedetto the Good.

It's like every time I see him, I just want to hug the guy, you know?

Or in the language of the day:

I luv u 2, BXVI.

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