Take a good look at the picture on the left. Apparently, this is what a Saint looks like...
On 1st May if all goes to schedule, Papa is going to beatify his predecessor, Pope John-Paul II.
Now, I am the first to admit that the last Pope was a great improvement on the bloody fool they have in the job at the moment, but is he a saint?
Well, according to the nonsense that the Catholics Church uses to decide on sainthood, the deceased person needs to have been responsible for a proven miracle in order to be beatified.
Luckily, the late John-Paul has already performed his first post death miracle :
The case involves the healing of a French religious sister from Parkinson’s disease. Sr. Marie Simon-Pierre was diagnosed with an aggressive form of the disease in 2001. Her order prayed to John Paul II after his death for help. After writing the Pope’s name on a piece of paper one night in June 2005, she reportedly awoke the next morning cured and was able to resume her work as a maternity nurse.Conveniently, you will note that this miracle was performed within the confines of the church itself. The cynical amongst us would, of course, say that it would have been more convincing if it had been performed on ordinary Joe Public - but, then again, even Jesus didn't appear in public after the resurrection, so there must be a precedent there.
Even more conveniently, the beatification ceremony is expected to brings hundreds of thousands of believers to the Vatican - so good news for the coffers as well, then...
Never before has a Pope beatified his immediate predecessor. And the usual five year waiting period has been waived as well - although, of course, it is difficult to understand why a miracle is not allowed to happen for the first five years? Perhaps God has a probationary period in mind?
John-Paul's papacy was not, of course, without it's problems. He presided over a massive cover up of sex abuse by members of the priesthood during his 26 year reign. But this is OK with the church who say his life isn't a "score card" on how he administered things, but more of a recognition that he led a "saintly life" - whatever that means!
Yet again, God must be pissing himself laughing at the way 'his' church carries on and I suppose the biggest question to be answered about all this nonsense must be...
...at the end of the day, what does it matter anyway?