President Bush and Pope Benedict

14 2007

President Bush and Pope Benedict

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He really is priceless. Other world leaders see the Pope with their advisers and the Vatican's peerlessly punctilious protocol experts, making sure they do not commit the slightest gaffe. But George W. Bush can outwit them all. On the plane to Rome, he was already struggling.

The Pope is addressed `Your Holiness' and Roman Catholics call him `The Holy Father.'

But somewhere in the tumble dryer that is the part of the U.S. President's brain set aside for words, the two concepts got tangled and he told the reporters:

"I think His Holy Father will be pleased to know that much of our foreign policy is based on the admonition to whom much is given, much is required."

No doubt Pope Benedict, whom Mr. Bush later described as "very smart," was able to deconstruct the rest of the sentence.

But before he got down to cases with Mr. Bush, the Bishop of Rome, Vicar of Jesus Christ, Successor of the Prince of the Apostles and Supreme Pontiff of the Universal Church had the unusual experience of being called `sir.'

"It's good to be with you, sir," said Mr. Bush as he sat down.

And the reporters could clearly hear the US leader say "Yes, sir" when the pope asked him if he was going to meet with officials of the lay Catholic Sant'Egidio community at the US embassy later during his visit.

The reporters also noted Bush's relaxed posture, crossing his legs "Texan style" while facing the pope in the private study of the apostolic palace.

Bush said his meeting with the pope, in which the president stressed his record in fighting AIDS and supporting other humanitarian causes, was a "moving experience."

"I was talking to a very smart, loving man," Bush said.


Source by vaticano

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