Interestingly, in an article about the reception of the Pope by millions in The Philippines, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune ran this AP sidebar:

Tearful Question


A 12-year-old girl tearfully asked Pope Francis why God allowed suffering by children. Listening to her intently and visibly moved, Francis couldn't offer a direct reply.


Glyzelle Palomar, a former street child and one of four young people who spoke during his encounter with Filipino youth, told the pope that many children abandoned by their parents fall victim to drugs and prostitution. "Why is god allowing something like this to happen, even to innocent children?
And why are there so few who are helping us" the girl said, breaking down in tears, unable to finish reading what she had prepared to say to the pope.


"Only when we are able to cry are we able to come close to responding to your question," Francis said. "There are some realities that you can only see through eyes that are cleansed by tears."

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Anyone there notice that Frankie didn't answer the question?  Of course not; that would be gauche.

Pretty words, shaped in metaphors, aren't going to change those kids' situation.  It'd be nice if Frankie could acknowledge that, maybe stir his sheep to action.  I can't help but notice that he didn't do that either, or at least it wasn't reported here.  Then, too, words seem to be the primary export of the Vatican, which gives me to wonder:

Do they ever actually DO SOMETHING?

Yes, I was shocked, shocked that the Pope couldn't fully explain his omnipotent and infinitely good god's rationale for systematically letting the foulest evil beset innocent children.

Captain Renault?  Zat you, guy?  [grin!]

If only we could round up all the usual suspects!

Bertold, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship!

Here's looking at you, kid.

If I had the power, I'd hereby appoint you Pope.

I know you would, Daniel! You are a kind and gentle man. Not a faux gentle man. 

Thing is, Frankie couldn't do that - he'd lose his audience!  So he did what he did: say something which said NOTHING as prettily as possible, then move on.

Despicable, of course ... doesn't change the fact that it's what he did.

It may be somewhat significant that the AP chose to include this item, a not too subtly cloaked criticism it would seem. Would that have happened years ago?

Another honest response by Frankie the Gaucho would be something along the lines of, "I got priests on 6 continents banging little kids like a screen door in a hurricane. And if we get caught, we just shovel them off on new and unsuspecting victims. By the way you little shit, didn't you get the message? Freedom of speech is one thing, but criticizing the church is something which is off limits. Go ahead. Keep it up. Just remember Charlie Hebdo."

Most excellent honest response there, Pat. I might suggest an addition: "You're just lucky most of my priests prefer prepubescent boys, you little bitch."

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