Thursday, March 08, 2007

Pope versus Pope

The current Pope, never one to be confused with a children's performer, has grunted his disgust that the last Pope, the one that everyone liked, shared a stage with Bob Dylan:

Pope Benedict says that he “doubts to this day whether it was right to let this kind of so-called prophet take the stage” in front of the Pope. He admits that John Paul did get across a spiritual message that was otherwise largely “ignored by the entertainment industry”.

This has tied us in a bit of theological knot, here. Because the Pope is infallible, so to question the Pope must be heretical. And yet here's another Pope, suggesting the Pope was fallible. So, since the current Pope can't be wrong, the previous Pope must have been wrong. But the previous Pope couldn't be wrong, so the current Pope must be.

Unless, you know, it's all a load of old tosh that old guy gets to be always right simply by rising to the top of an organisation. There is that possibility.

Still, if Ratzinger thinks that Dylan is bad, he should try that Bryan Ferry covers album. Now, that is unholy.


Mikey C said...

Apparently, the Pope's only infallible if he's speaking "ex cathedra", (i.e. in his special, formal chair in the vatican) which hardly ever happens. Bob Dylan, however, is infallible only when playing songs from Blood on the Tracks.

Anonymous said...

so now we know why Simon Cowell dislikes Dylan... He's trying to get on the Vatican's good side... oh no... wait... no, actually the only similarity here is that they're all arses

nwwghiaftc said...

Good Morning,

The Pope is infallible only in matters of faith and morals. Thus, John Pau II was not speaking "ex cathedra" when he drew from Bobby Dylan for a sermon. So when Benedict XVI expressed reservations about Dylan, he was not challenging John Paul II's infallibility. It means that one says "tomayto" and the other says "tomahto".

simon h b said...

Thanks nwwghiaftc, but I'm still a little confused - surely Benedict was attacking the moral basis of Dylan's work? And isn't everything a matter of faith for Catholicism?

Anonymous said...

If you're going to say that everything is a matter of faith for a Catholic, than it should follow that everything is a matter of patriotism for an American. Pope Benedict's questioning of the Bob Dylan engagement is no more controversial or unfaithful than the questioning of Iraq's existence of weapons of mass destruction in 2003 was unpatriotic or subversive. We were all created to use our minds and help others. And believe it or not, we Catholics do use our minds, including when we go to record stores and iTunes. I never would have come across your blog if I hadn't seen the incorrect assumption of yours printed in Friday's Sun-Times, but having said that, I like your writing style and the subject you cover and will be visiting again. But please be sure of your facts next time.

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