Pope Announces New Congregation Charged with Noticing the Modern World

By The The Pope’s Fool News Service
December 1, 2014

The Popes Fool News Service (We Make Stuff Up)VATICAN CITY (TPF) — The Vatican announced today that as part of the reorganization of the Roman Curia, Pope Francis is establishing a new congregation charged with the study the modern world. Called the Congregation for Modernity, it is to be headed by Archbishop Madre del Dio Obviamente.

“Ever since the Enlightenment,” said Archbishop Obviamente, “and especially since the First Vatican Council, the Church and the modern world have had a bit of a rocky relationship. The church is slowly starting to recognize, if not outright admit, that some teachings from that time, although considered ‘doctrine,’ may have in fact been slightly flawed. This includes the papacy’s longstanding condemnations of freedom of conscience, freedom of religion for other faiths, freedom of speech, participation in elections, democracy, historical analysis, ecumenism, literary criticism of the Bible, and the study of the early Church Fathers.”

“As it says in Vatican II’s Gaudium et Spes,” he continued, “we must notice ‘the whole human family along with the sum of those realities in the midst of which it lives; that world which is the theater of man’s history, and the heir of his energies, his tragedies and his triumphs.’ Thus, it is time to consider the advancements the modern world has made, in accordance with the natural law, and in light of the actions of the Holy Spirit, who can choose to work outside the friendly confines of Holy Mother the Church.”

When asked the scope of the new Congregation’s inquiry, the Archbishop replied that it would delve into what the secular world considers “progress,” focusing in particular on issues of good governance, including democracy, fair representation, checks and balances, the rule of law, free speech, accountability, transparency, and modern standards of justice. When asked whether any lessons learned would be applied to the governance of the Church itself, Archbishop Obviamente had no comment. He also noted that while the modern world has made great progress concerning the rights of women, the question of gender equality in the Church will not be addressed, due to the special dignity in which women are held.

Other sources in the Vatican were quick to point out that while the Congregation for Modernity is studying the matter, it should not be inferred that any doctrine will ever change. Likewise, Vatican City State will continue to be governed as an absolute monarchy, with the Pope as the Head of State, holding full legislative, executive and judicial powers.

Pope Declares Obsequiousness No Longer Fashionable; Wants Bishops to Man Up

By The The Pope’s Fool News Service
November 5, 2014

The Popes Fool News Service (We Make Stuff Up)VATICAN CITY (TPF) — Ending an unspoken code that has shaped communications among members of the hierarchy for decades, the Pope has quietly rescinded the practice of obsequiousness, wherein servile deference and fawning to one’s superiors is mirrored by expectations of unwavering obedience from one’s subordinates.

“Enough already,” said the Pope, in his weekly general audience in St. Peter’s Square today. “It’s sad when you see a man who seeks this office and who does so much to get there and when he makes it, he doesn’t serve, but struts like a peacock, living only for his own vanity,” the Pope said. “We don’t need sycophants and servile flatterers.”

Pope Francis

He said he wants the world’s bishops to be servants and shepherds who use their position to care for people and the faith, not to seek power and boost their pride. This is why the role of a bishop “is not a position of prestige or an honorary office,” he said. “It is a service. Jesus wanted it to be like this.”

Our correspondent on the ground in Vatican City reports feelings of confusion and betrayal among the ranks of many of the bishops, Vatican staffers, and Curial hangers-on. “That’s easy enough for the Pope to say,” muttered one. “He hasn’t been here for decades; he hasn’t been living with this stuff day in and day out for years on end. He expects us to change overnight. But it ain’t gonna happen.”