Pope Francis gets his own Fan Magazine “Il Mio Papa”
The 68-page Il Mio Papa (My Pope) will hit Italian newsstands on Ash Wednesday, offering a glossy medley of papal pronouncements and photographs, along with peeks into his personal life. Each weekly issue will also include a pullout centerfold of the pope, accompanied by a quote.
Silvio Berlusconi’s media empire has taken a surprising new direction with the launch of its latest magazine. Best known for celebrity titles full of paparazzi pictures, Il Mio Papa – My Pope in Italian – will be devoted entirely to Pope Francis. Scheduled for a print run of 3m for the launch issue, the target circulation is said to be 500,000.
“In fact, the current Pope is a figure who, thanks to his empathy, as well as the power, the courage and the simplicity of his message, has won over everyone, both the faithful and non-believers,” he observed.
“Various magazines publish the pope’s teachings, but they have an accord with us,” said the Rev. Giuseppe Costa, the director of the Libreria Editrice Vaticana. A similar accord has not been signed with My Pope, he added, though the magazine should have known better “because we have a relationship with Mondadori.”
Rome is feverishly awaiting the inauguration of the new Pope Francis I. on Tuesday. Delegations from 132 countries, more than 80 heads of state met on Monday in Rome to attend the service for the enthronement of the Argentine Jorge Mario Bergoglio.
The Holy See maintains diplomatic relations with 179 countries. “We expect that about 250,000 people will attend the divine service,” reported the Vatican spokesman, father Federico Lombardi. The rough estimate of the Roman city administration is that up to one million people could attend. The Vatican is “certainly happy if that many people participate.”
Mugabe once again causes discord
The Italian government already raised the safety precautions up to a maximum, and the city of Rome, which has slightly more than 2.5 million has set all the machinery in motion to cope with the rush of the faithful. Thousands of security forces are on duty to ensure the safety of the heads of State and Government. Drastic restrictions of air traffic over Rome were put into effect. Snipers, bomb experts, dog patrols and motorcycle units are on duty.
The Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, who had travelled to Rome despite an EU travel ban, caused polemic. Zimbabwe argues that the Vatican is a sovereign state and therefore not affected by EU travel ban. The EU travel ban against dictator Mugabe applies since 2002. However, the controversial African head of State traveled to Rome in 2005 for the funeral of Pope John Paul II. He also went there in May 2011, to attend the celebrations for the beatification of Pope John Paul II.
The Jesuit Jorge Mario Bergoglio from Argentina is the new Pope of the Roman Catholic Church. Francis I. is the first Jesuit in the papal office and also the first non-European.
The Roman Catholic Church experienced a double premiere: for the first time in history there is a Pope who comes from South America. And for the first time a member of the Jesuit order holds the highest ecclesiastical Office. The Argentinian Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected Pope on Wednesday evening in the fifth round of votes. Until now, the 76-year-old had been the Archbishop of Buenos Aires. Bergoglio’s name as Pope is Francesco (Francis), he is the first Pope who has chosen this name.
Supposedly second in 2005
Bergoglio is a surprise for most Vatican experts, although he had, according to a “diary” which in 2005 had been smuggled out of the Conclave by one of the Cardinals, received the second most votes after Joseph Ratzinger. His withdrawal paved the way for the later Pope Benedict XVI., the document says.
Like many of his compatriots, the new Pope holds both the Argentine and the Italian citizenship and speaks Spanish and Italian, additionally some German due to a sojourn in Germany, were he wrote his doctoral thesis in 1985. The graduate chemist is regarded a multi-talent – good cook, opera lover, friend of the Greek classic, Shakespeare and Dostoevsky, good swimmer and strong, although he is struggling with lung problems since his childhood.
Bergoglio is considered a modest, down-to-earth and ecologically-minded person. As the “Cardinal of the poor”, he uses mostly public transportation and waived episcopal splendor. He confirmed this impression in his first appearance on the balcony of the St. Peter’s Basilica.
The Cardinals gathered in the Vatican want to set a date for the beginning of the Conclave to elect a new Pope this very day (Friday, March 8). The date would be announced in the evening, told the Vatican.
The election of a new Pope will start probably early next week. “It could be Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday”, Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi said earlier today. “We can assume that the Congregation is going to vote in its afternoon meeting on the date for the beginning of the Conclave”, told Lombardi.
The Cardinals, assembled in the Papal States from all over the world, will meet again at 5:00 pm. The session will last until 7:00 p.m.. Currently, more than 150 Cardinals are meeting in the so-called General Congregations in the Vatican. At the time of resignation, 115 of them were younger than 80 years, making them eligible to elect a new Pope in the premises of the Sistine Chapel.
The Cardinals gathered to prepare for the election, on Friday officially accepted the notice of removal of the two Cardinals Julius Riyadi Darmaatmadja from Jakarta and the Scotsman Keith Michael Patrick O’Brien. The Indonesians renounced for health-, the Archbishop of Edinburgh for “personal reasons” from participating in the Conclave.
As head of the Congregation of Bishops, Marc Ouellet (68) is kind of a staff manager at the Vatican. Pope to be “would be a nightmare,” Ouellet was once quoted. However, his chances are not bad at all.
Ouellet is a cosmopolitan who speaks also German, Portuguese, and Spanish in addition to French and English. Although the former Ratzinger students is well networked within the Curia, the widespread secularism in his home province of Quebec could speak against him as the new Pope.
In theological questions, he appears strict and conservative. Among other things he spoke out publicly against abortion and gay marriage. His supporters believe he would make a modest Pope and a deeply faithful defender of the Catholic identity. For his critics, as a Ratzinger student, he is to similar to Benedict XVI.
Ouellet was born in 1944, in Amos (Quebec), in a French-speaking family with eight children. He studied theology in Montreal, was ordained a priest in 1968 and became in 1972 the Sulpician Order. In Innsbruck, he continued his studies. On March 3 2001, Pope John Paul II. appointed the Canadian, Secretary of the Ecumenical Council at the Vatican. A year later he was appointed Archbishop of Quebec, and Cardinal in 2003. 2010, Ouellet became Prefect of the Congregation of Bishops and President of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America.
By the prophecies of Irish St. Malachy the next pope will be last, will be known as Peter of Rome and a great Armageddon will happen during his papacy.
With the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI, the first pontiff to step down in almost 600 years, Malachy’s prophecy has garnered renewed attention — not least because, on Malachy’s list, Benedict was number 111.
The Prophecy of the Popes (Latin: Prophetia Sancte Malachiae Archiepiscopi, de Summis Pontificibus) is a series of 112 short, cryptic phrases in Latin which purport to predict the Roman Catholic popes (along with a few antipopes), beginning with Pope Celestine II. The alleged prophecies were first published by Benedictine monk Arnold de Wyon in 1595. Wyon attributes the prophecies to Saint Malachy, a 12th‑century Archbishop of Armagh, Ireland.
Malachy used a short phrase in Latin to describe each Pope, beginning with Celestine II and “From a castle on the Tiber.” That Pope’s birth name was Guido di Castello.
More recently, he described Pope John Paul I. with the phrase: “From the midst of the moon.” His reign, which began in 1978, began with the moon half full and lasted only one month – or one moon.
He was followed by Pope John Paul II. by the Latin expression “Laboris Solis” – or translated “From the labor of the sun” – an expression meaning a solar eclipse.
As it turned out, John Paul II was the only known pope to be born on the day of a solar eclipse – and he was buried on the day of a solar eclipse.
Traditionally, British bookmakers offer bets on who will be the new Pope. While the largest British boomaker William Hill sees Cardinal Secretary of State Tarciso Bertone (Italy) in a lead with a quote of 9/4, Irish bookie Paddypower has Curial Cardinal Peter Turkson (Ghana) ahead with 2/1. However, quotes change daily if not hourly!
UPDATE: William Hill is no longer offering bets on the new Pope!
With the General Congregations on the way, there is about 10 Cardinals that can be called most “papabile”. Candidates from Africa have good chances, but also churchmen from the Americas can hope. Or will it be yet again an Italian?
These are some of the favored candidades by British bookmakers:
Archbishop Angelo Scola, 71, Italy
Milan’s Archbishop Angelo Scola got entrusted with the management of the populous archdiocese by Benedict XVI. in 2011. He was a close friend of John Paul II, and after his death a contender for the Pope’s successor. The 71-year-old commented vaguely on Benedict’s resignation: “It will be, as he himself has said, for the good of the Church.” “It’s a decision that fills our soul with pain and regret.”, said the Archbishop.
As the Roman “Fatto Quotidiano” reported, Angelo Scola was one of Joseph Ratzinger’s students in Freiburg (Germany) and later in Milan taught no less than Silvio Berlusconi, as well as his political companion now convicted of mafia links Marcello dell’ Utri. His friendship with the founder of the world wide active, in Italy very influential Catholic movement “Communione e Liberazione” (“Community and Liberation”), Don Giussani, has caused concerne within the Church. “Communion and Liberation” is close to Berlusconi’s PdL party and is suspected of bribe payments in connection with the Vatileaks affair. Last year, Scola distanced himself from the movement.