Papal glory was overrated

Reader's beef with believers is when they pronounce their faith or denomination to be superior to all others.

To the Editor,

I admit being an observant antagonistic, anarchistic, agnostic cynic (Triple A-C), who holds nothing against anyone of any faith or religion. My belief is that everyone should be free to worship whom or what they wish, as long as they don’t try to convert me.

My main beef with believers is when they pronounce their faith or denomination to be superior to all others; an attitude that has been the basis of so many wars and conflicts since time immemorial.

Having said that, I’m always interested to learn how religions relate to their followers, and nobody on our little blue planet could have missed the recent Papal Conclave in Rome.

From my position way outside the box, it was quite amusing in these days of Twitter and Instagram, with CNN reporting from inside a virtual Sistine Chapel complete with ballot-burning stoves, that participants chose to communicate with smoke signals.

Every news outlet had their “experts” to guide the ignorant like me, with much speculation about where the 266th Pope would come from and why. I even learned the last non-European Pope was Syria’s Gregory III in 731, whose first decision was to ban horse meat.

I hoped that the Cardinal from Milan, whom bookmakers had made the front-runner, would be the chosen one; coming from Italy’s most corrupt city where the Calabrian Mafia known as ‘Ndrangheta hold the real power. That seemed such a delicious irony.

Of course, those 115 progressive red-suited celibate senior citizens had other ideas; choosing an Italian immigrant’s son from Argentina on March 13, to coincide with the date that Pope Felix III began his reign back in 483, no doubt.

So much media descended on the Vatican before, during and after the conclave; the shenanigans were turned into a global spectacle.

Seasoned news anchors and reporters fawned over every word they were told by those holding somewhat dubious hierarchical positions in the Roman Church.

It was another example of what I call the “Oprahization” of the news, not unlike the way Olympic Games are covered when the media attempts to fill our heads with feel-good meaningless details about participants of another fetid, fallacious farce.

Next up will no doubt be all the nauseating details of the birth of a future British monarch.

Bernie Smith,

Parksville