Random thoughts and insights – always shaken, never stirred

Archive for April 1st, 2005

I Once Saw the Pope

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I only saw the Holy Father in the flesh once, and that was some 25 years ago. He had come to America, and was to say Mass in Shea stadium. I and a friend who is a monk went, and waited quite some time. For reasons I never learned, the Papal motorcade was running late, possibly because of the torrential rain that was falling. Indeed, we were all of us in that stadium soaked clean through, not that anyone looked to be leaving. But people were impatient, and a little grumpy.

From my seat, I could see the elevated highway and so noticed the motorcade heading towards the stadium. As it drew nearer, the rain stopped and the sky cleared. It became sunny and quite beautiful out, and I suspect that plus the excitement of seeing the Vicar of Christ contributed to the amazing enthusiasm and top-of-the-lungs cheering that erupted when the white car came into the stadium and went on for a long time. I myself was standing on the seat roaring. You could feel the man’s charisma way up in the nosebleed section where I was sitting. He filled that stadium with his presence even though I was so far away he was but a small figure in white.

I do not much remember the Mass, or anything else, but I remember John Paul II filling that stadium. I have never experienced anything like that again. An odd coda. As the Pope departed the stadium, it began to rain again. Many people muttered nervously about that as they made their way out of the stadium into the parking lot. A woman – clearly nervous – came up to my friend (he was wearing a Roman collar) and asked him if it had been a miracle. He demurred, correctly in my view. I don’t know about such things; I only know what happened. And that we had an amazing man occupying the See of Peter.

Fox News is reporting that the Pope has lost consciousness.

Update Good grief – moments after I posted this Shepard Smith on Fox just referred to the very event. In all this time, I’ve never heard anyone else talk about the way the rain stopped. He said, “the skies seemed to part for him” which strikes me as just the way it felt at the time.

Written by martinipundit

April 1, 2005 at 5:55 pm

Posted in Church

The ‘Koran Code’

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Meanwhile, a Koranic ‘scholar’ has determined the US is doomed.

Explaining his theory about the approaching extinction of the US, the scholar went on to analyze many numbers and letters mentioned in the Koran. He said a careful reading and analysis of words appearing in the Opening and Yusuf suras show that the US will exist for only 231 years. How did he reach that number? Silwadi said that by combing a number of suras hinting at US sins he reached the numbers 1776 (the year the US achieved independence) and 231. He added the two numbers and the result was 2007, the year when the US is expected to disappear. In his lengthy study, which is being circulated in many Muslim countries, Silwadi noted that the US has often been compared to a tree that grows very quickly and bears fruit, but has no roots. In an attempt to find a reference to this metaphor in the Koran, Silwadi said he counted 1776 verses from the beginning of the Koran until he reached verse 26 of the Ibrahim Sura, which states: “And the parable of an evil word is as an evil tree pulled up from the earth’s surface; it has no stability.”

But wait, isn’t it only the year 1425 in the Islamic calendar? That means the US has 582 years left. As the author of the article said:

Silwadi, who is from the village of Silwad near Ramallah — the home of Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal — is not a world-renowned scholar.

You know, there just might be a reason for that.

Written by martinipundit

April 1, 2005 at 1:45 pm

Posted in GWOT

Holy Father’s Condition Deteriorating

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It’s looking very bad:

Pope John Paul II suffered heart failure on Thursday while under treatment for a urinary infection which caused a high fever. On April 1 his condition had been stabilized, and papal spokesman Joaquin Navarro-Valls said that the Holy Father was “lucid, fully conscious, and extraordinarily serene,” but conceded that his condition is “very grave.” Navarro-Valls was highly emotional, his eyes brimming with tears, as he briefed reporters on the Pope’s condition at midday on Friday.

He said that the Pope’s overall condition had improved after a Thursday-night crisis, but his blood pressure remained “unstable” and his prognosis was poor. However, he flatly denied reports that the Pontiff had lapsed into a coma.


Written by martinipundit

April 1, 2005 at 11:23 am

Posted in Church

Fark Hacked

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It appears Fark has been hacked. It won’t last long, but here’s a picture of the pigs who did it:

(I know, it’s wrong, and ordinarily I wouldn’t countenance such a thing, but it has been one lousy week and it doesn’t look like it’s going to get better. I think we could all use the humor.

And it is Fark – they probably hacked themselves!)

Written by martinipundit

April 1, 2005 at 11:00 am

Posted in General

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