Friday, November 1, 2013

What a friend we have in...Pope Francis.

Osservatore Romano/Reuters
Earlier this week, like a gazillion other people, I clicked onto the BuzzFeed post titled, "Boy Wanders Onto Stage To Hang Out With Pope Francis."

It was tagged and promoted as "super cute," so I thought I'd stay at the level of amused and indeed I was...for the few times I scrolled through the images.

Being me, I snickered at the sight of Vatican handlers trying to hustle the kid off the stage and away from the pope. I rolled my eyes at one particularly fine example of grim piety going on in the background.

But I simply couldn't and didn't stay in that zone of acidic amusement. Instead, I found myself tugged back to the first GIF sequence of Pope Francis turning to look at a child who is peering at him.

I've written, "turning to look," but it's really a glimpse of seeing and being seen; of agape made visible. By the third round of watching this particular sequence, my throat has tightened, my eyes have become hot with unshed tears that would soon spill. And for the first time in my life, the term "Holy Father" made absolute sense.


  1. Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs.” 15 And he laid his hands on them and went on his way. Matthew 19:14

    Meredith, thanks for this beautiful post.

  2. I'm digging that it really didn't faze him at all, it was like this happens to him every day. And perhaps it does, the wonder of the surprise joys with which God gifts us.

  3. Lynda, Melanie and anyone else reading comments: My heart is opened by this pope every day and in every way.

    I really was surprised to find myself moved to tears as I watched that GIF and in all the years I've been involved with church, I have only met two clerics that I felt called to call, "Father." The others? Let's not go there!


Thanks for your comment and please consider continuing this conversation with me on Twitter and Facebook!