I tell you, we are here on Earth to fart around,
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Monday, April 04, 2005

Top Five Names for the New Pope

Who'da thunk it - it turns out that Natalie and Katie are devout catholics. Our yacht trip, I'm afraid, has been cancelled until further notice... so here I am blogging again.

The Pope is dead. I must say, it's weird thinking in terms of who will be the 'next' Pope - for me (and, presumably, anyone under 26), this guy was the Pope. But alas, even the Palestinians seem to have forgotten who Yasser Arafat was, and I guess we'll all get used to a new Pope.

I'll leave it to others to make predictions or talk about the debate between reformers and traditionalists in the Vatican. What I'm much more interested in is the new Pope's name.

As you might know, once a candidate has garnered the necessary two-thirds majority in that little secret society meeting next week, he will be asked a) whether he accepts and b) what his name will be. In other words, it's all up to the new Pope himself.

Which is why I'm sending out a message to all Cardinals around the world: If you're elected - choose a cool name (no offence, JPII). Matter or fact, here's a list of my top five names I'd like the new Pope to have:

5. Hyginus II - now we all know what people tend to think of old men with long robes. This is the one if the Vatican wants to clarify just how often the Pope showers.

4. Innocent XIV - 'nomen est omen'; nothing like a name like that to remind the world of the Pope's pure intentions.

3. Damasus III - ideal for reaching out to the Arab world, specifically Syria.

2. Urban IX - to regain the trust of London's party scene. As discussed with S, Garage I or 2-Step I would also be options.

1. Hilarius II - my personal favourite. Whoever the new Pope is, if he chooses this name he'll prove to the (English-speaking) world that being the Holy Father does not mean losing your sense of humour.

Here's a list of all previous Popes to show you I'm not making this ish up. Also, I heard on BBC last night that the process of making John Paul II a Saint is already underway. I checked on that list, and only five Popes have been sanctified (if that's how you call it) since the year 1000. Wojtyla, it seems, left quite an impression.

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