In contrast with recent images of the Pope as a frail old man, opening today’s newspaper and seeing a photo of a seven month old baby with its forehead marked with ashes during yesterday’s religious services troubles me.
(edit Feb. 11, 2005)
Why you ask? Long ago(I think it was comments made by Chesty Puller in his biography) I read where in wartime(this has nothing to do with Iraq), the Protestant community was criticized for sending “older” men to serve as chaplains compared to the generally much younger men from the Catholic community serving in that capacity. The feeling expressed had to do with combat troops having more rapport/affinity with Catholic priests closer to their own age and physical stamina(a benefit under the conditions) even though the soldiers weren’t necessarily of that faith. But seeing the Pope as he is today make me wonder how he is viewed as a vigorous leader compared to his younger days. Finally, the bit about the baby just made me roll my eyes. There is such a thing as being too young to comprehend what is happening.