17 September 2015

A wee tale

Long, long ago in a galaxy more or less on top of us, a Cardinal-General spoke to an insignificant hermit via Galactic-Skype.

This event was a great accomplishment for the Cardinal-General because the hermit would normally not communicate unless it was face to face.

The hermit was asked by the hierarch what did he think of the Universal Pontiff's new encyclical.

The hermit told the Cardinal-General that he had read it in a few dozen vernacular languages.

More insistently the hierarch asked the hermit "But what do you think of it?"

The hermit replied, "But I have not read it yet."

The Cardinal-General looked befuddled and asked, "What do you mean? You just said..."

The hermit interrupted him -- something hierarchs are not accustomed to experiencing -- and said, "When it is released I shall eagerly read it."

Quite heatedly the Cardinal-General asked, "Are you playing some game?"

The hermit looked at the hierarch and said, "Are you?"

The Cardinal-General looked near to apoplexy, so the hermit spoke.  "You act as if it has been released, and we should all know what it says and be able to discuss it.

"But until it is released in Latin it has not been released.  And until it is released in Latin ...  it does not exist.  And until it is released in Latin, and you and I have read it, fasted and prayed over it, we have nothing to discuss with regard to it."

The storm clouds passed from the hierarch's face, and he began to laugh.  "Only you would say such a thing to me."

With piercing eyes, the hermit looked into the little camera at the top of the view-screen and spoke firmly but quietly: "I suppose I must be the last fool alive in your court, O King."

And with those words, the hermit disconnected the connexion, left the small library at the mission compound, and began his long trek up into the wilderness where he lived and where Jesus was waiting with some cooked fish for lunch.