|Pope Paul VI, 1978.|
That was 35 years and three popes ago.
I was 10, and already recording current events along with such entries as (Jan. 8), "Today it rained. I read a Nancy Drew book & watched TV. Mom made noodles. We called Kiddie World but they were out of Blips."
Tonight, I edited the News Journal's (my hometown paper's) front page local reaction piece on the selection of Pope Francis.
In addition to taking part in a tradition dating to the first century, I was circling back to my own childhood.
Said one of the Catholics interviewed by reporter Beth Miller, "I find comfort in my faith, because it is unchanging. The church is the church, and that's one thing you can count on."
After eight years at Holy Angels and four years at Padua Academy (St. Anthony of Padua being one of the well known disciples of St. Francis of Assisi, providing bonus circle-back), I cannot say I am a practicing Catholic. That "unchanging" nature of the church doesn't do much to advise or comfort in our modern times.
And of course, no mention of the Catholic Church would be honest without recognition of the terrible abuse some have suffered.
Still, I still identify with the religion.
And I find comfort in my fellow man's ability to have faith.