Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Interregnum: Day Three

My friend Peter Vere of Catholic Light, appeared on MSNBC the other day, as shown in this video stream, courtesy of The Political Teen.

And now that you bring it up, Pete, should John Paul be known as "the Great"? The title is not codified, but is rendered by popular acclamation. Even then, it has only been conferred on two other popes -- Gregory, who in the sixth century reformed the plainchant that bears his name and solidified the primacy of Rome against Constantinople; and Leo, who in the eighth or ninth century (no time to look it up today) intervened to save Rome from the barbarian hoardes.

I suppose bringing down a latter-day Russian Empire without firing a shot is in the same league. Well, that settles it for me; "John Paul the Great" it is.

I must beg to differ, though, with my friend Mark Shea of Catholic and Enjoying It, who refers to the late pontiff as "Pope St John Paul the Great" (in an otherwise excellent analysis). Sorry, Mark, but even HE would consider canonization to be presumptuous at this point. Better to list him as "Servant of God." While in the West, this latter title is reserved for those whose causes for sainthood are about to be introduced, the Eastern churches, confer this title on any deceased member of the faithful.

Better also to pray FOR the repose of his soul, rather than TO him for his intercession.

More analysis to follow...

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