PopeWatch: Peace Balloon

VATICAN-POPE-AUDIENCE

 

Faithful readers of PopeWatch will no doubt recall this incident from January of last year:

Alfred W. Klieforth, US consul general at the Vatican, had a conversation with Pius XII soon after he became Pope in 1939.  He reported the conversation to his superiors, including this statement by the Pope:  ”He said that he opposed unalterably every compromise with National Socialism. He regarded Hitler not only as an untrustworthy scoundrel, but as a fundamentally wicked person. He did not believe Hitler capable of moderation.”  This type of clear eyed analysis is sometimes missing today in the Church which since World War II has often seemed to adopt a de facto pacifism.  A small symbolic event yesterday reminds us of why prayers for peace alone are often not sufficient in this Vale of Tears:

 

Two white doves that were released by children standing alongside Pope Francis as a peace gesture have been attacked by other birds.

As tens of thousands of people watched in St. Peter’s Square on Sunday, a seagull and a large black crow swept down on the doves right after they were set free from an open window of the Apostolic Palace.

One dove lost some feathers as it broke free from the gull. But the crow pecked repeatedly at the other dove.

It was not clear what happened to the doves as they flew off.

 

Always remember that Christ admonishes us both to be as innocent as doves and as wily as serpents. 

Go here to view the post.  That incident has caused a change in policy:

The doves were replaced by balloons on Sunday. Alongside Pope Francis, children released pink, purple, white and green balloons, including a hot-air balloon filled with messages promoting peace. “Here’s the balloons that mean ‘peace,’” Pope Francis said. He is the first pope to take the name belonging to Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals, according to news reports.

The Vatican did not mention last year’s dove debacle.

Go here to view the rest.  Now if only Catholics around the globe at risk from Jihadists and other enemies, could be replaced by balloons.  PopeWatch is moved to song:

Now, I’ve been happy lately,
Thinkin’ about the good things to come
And I believe it could be;
Something good has begun.

Oh, I’ve been smilin’ lately,
Dreamin’ about the world as one
And I believe it could be;
Some day it’s going to come

‘Cause out on the edge of darkness,
There rides a peace balloon.
Oh, peace balloon take this country.
Come take me home again.

Now, I’ve been smiling lately,
Thinkin’ about the good things to come
And I believe it could be;
Something good has begun.

Oh, peace balloon soundin’ louder.
Glide on the peace train.
Ooh, ah, ee, ah, ooh, ah.
Come on, now peace balloon.

Yes, peace balloon holy roller.
Everyone jump on the peace balloon.
Ooh, ah, ee, ah, ooh, ah.
Come on, now peace balloon.

Get your bags together.
Go bring your good friends too
Because it’s gettin’ nearer;
It soon will be with you.

Now, come and join the livin’.
It’s not so far from you
And it’s gettin’ nearer;
Soon it will all be true.

Oh, peace balloon soundin’ louder.
Glide on the peace balloon.
Ooh, ah, ee, ah, ooh, ah.
Come on, now peace balloon.
Peace ballloon.

Now, I’ve been cryin’ lately,
Thinkin’ about the world as it is.
Why must we go on hating?
Why can’t we live in bliss?

‘Cause out on the edge of darkness,
There rides a peace balloon.
Oh, peace balloon take this country.
Come take me home again.

Oh, peace balloon soundin’ louder.
Glide on the peace balloon.
Ooh, ah, ee, ah, ooh, ah.
Come on, now peace balloon.

Yes, peace balloon holy roller.
Everyone jump on the peace balloon.
Ooh, ah, ee, ah, ooh, ah.
Come on, come on, come on.
Yeah, come on, peace balloon.
Yes, it’s the peace balloon.
Ooh, ah, ee, ah, ooh, ah.
Come on, now peace balloon.
Peace balloon.
Ooh, ah, ee, ah, ooh, ah.

 

With sincere apologies to Cat Stevens, or, as he prefers to be called now, Yusuf Islam.

 

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19 Comments

  1. “Sometimes missing” and “often seemed” are perhaps not “clear eyed”enough, as far as analysis goes, when it comes to the hierarchy of the Church, particularly as it is constituted under Francis.

  2. I wonder…

    No seriously, part of me really wonders if the dove attack was a prophetic warning (is the crow Islam and the gull leftism? Or are they specific nations? Times of war and famine? etc) and we’re “too smart” to heed what God’s trying to tell us.

    Like I said, I don’t know, but part of me finds it interesting how well that moment would have fit in a story of David or Solomon from the Old Testament.

  3. Nate, my thoughts exactly. I thought of the ill omens Julius Caesar received right before he was stabbed to death in the Senate just a short distance from the Vatican. I’m not normally superstitious, but it makes me uncomfortable.

  4. I could not help recalling Vergil’s dreadful pun about the pigeon
    Decidit exanimis, vitamque reliquit in astris – Falling to earth dead and leaving its life in the air.
    Alexander Pope copied it in Windsor Forest
    “Oft, as in airy rings they skim the heath,
    The clam’rous lapwings feel the leaden death:
    Oft, as the mounting larks their notes prepare,
    They fall, and leave their little lives in air.”
    Vergil, I fancy, got it from Homer – ώκύς δ’ έκ μελέων θυμός πτάτο,

  5. (Long time lurker)

    So.. lightening strikes the Vatican when Pope Benedict resigns… crow/seagull attack the doves that Pope Francis releases…. the synod of the Family was a roller coaster of a ride… and finally His Holiness states that Catholics should not breed like Rabbits…
    I can’t help but think of Mathew 7:16 but maybe I’m crazy….

    I have faith in the Holy Spirit and all shall be well… eventually 🙂

  6. I like Nate’s comment “how well that moment would have fit in a story of David or Solomon from the Old Testament. ” Sometimes today people reading the OT ask why God doesn’t “speak” to us today like He did then… I think He does.

  7. If signs are fascinating to you then the timing of Pope Emeritus retirement and the lightning strike on the dome was one interesting sign.

    I tend to believe that these times are sobering to say the least. You know who wins. Keep at prayer!

  8. I saw the attack on the doves as symbolic of this papacy and what’s happening in the Church, and we saw that play out particularly at the Synod. The balloons may symbolize that this papacy is full of hot air, or maybe that the real “surprises” are going to be unleashed later this year.

  9. “The balloons may symbolize that this papacy is full of hot air”
    🙂
    Is time on our side? balloons will naturally deflate eventually-

  10. Why weren’t there any primary colored balloons, and wouldn’t the Square be more fitting for such activity if balloons must replace the classic symbol to avoid possibility of a repeated message?
    That last verse is creepy, in keeping with the memory of the doves attacked.
    Thunder and lightening are also in the heavenly message category … thinking of a memory causing wonder in that locale.
    I don’t know whether the saying that seeing a robin is a sign of spring is particular to New England. Today, after the winds of the blizzard called Juno quieted, I saw a flock of at least a dozen robins crowd into the small holly shrub for berries. There is no thaw, the ground is covered by snow and ice, and they won’t find a place to hunt for bugs, but – they were beautiful and alive.

  11. Soon after Francis praised Paul VI for Humanae Vitae,
    he contradicted himself by advising Catholics to be
    responsible parents by having smaller families, which
    strongly suggests the use of contraception. Will the
    real Pope Francis please step forward?

    Today Francis had a private meeting with the, “Devil’s Daughter”
    a male transsexual, who was shunned by his parish priest
    in Spain, and his fiancée. Apparently D.D. was deeply offended
    by his priest, who will be severely punished for being a faithful Catholic.

    For what it is worth Jorge Bergoglio was elected on 3/13/13. Yikes!!

  12. Franco wrote, “Soon after Francis praised Paul VI for Humanae Vitae, he contradicted himself by advising Catholics to be responsible parents by having smaller families, which strongly suggests the use of contraception.”
    No, it does not, for Bl Paul VI says, “If therefore there are well-grounded reasons for spacing births, arising from the physical or psychological condition of husband or wife, or from external circumstances, the Church teaches that married people may then take advantage of the natural cycles immanent in the reproductive system and engage in marital intercourse only during those times that are infertile, thus controlling birth in a way which does not in the least offend the moral principles which We have just explained.”
    When an objective can be pursued by licit means, why assume the Holy Father is recommending illicit ones?

  13. M.P-S.

    My problem with Francis is his strong emphasis on smaller
    Catholic families, which will require the use of contraception.
    Francis did mention Natural Family Planning to reduce the
    Catholic population. However, he did so without the strong
    emphasis he used to encourage Catholics to reduce their numbers.
    Young Catholic couples under the impression that Francis wants
    smaller Catholic families may seek different and more reliable
    methods of contraception because the pope demands smaller
    Catholic families. The issue as argued by Francis is fewer
    Catholics and smaller families, not Natural Family Planning.

    Also, I understand Francis is an environmentalist, who intends
    to state his position on the environment soon. One of the major
    positions for environmentalists is population control. I believe
    Francis’statements to reduce the number of Catholics is
    motivated by the need for environmentalists to reduce the human
    population.

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