Did you hear? Did you hear? I'll tell you everything, my dears. The pope didn't cancel Christmas after all!
Roughly one week ago, you were probably thought the Pope was a big, mean, grinchity old Grinch. What, with his green, wrinkly face, and all that snarling he does. "I hate that annoying Cindy Lou Who," he said during his weekly speech once. And don't forget the news stories that disparaged the Pope's name because, they explain, in the Pope's new book he says Jesus was never born in a manger, and instead it was probably a cave. Jesus was born in a cramped, cold, dark cave and not a small, adorable, romantic and cozy manger. In case you don't know, people love mangers. On top of all that, some writers just made up that he disapproved of caroling, too! People love caroling, too. So, it was bad for the Pope. People weren't happy with him. Not one person was one bit happy with Mr. Benedict. He was not getting any of Gladys' fudge, that's for sure.
But, as Reuters' Phillip Pullella explained today, none of that is true. The thing the people writing those stories failed to do was keep reading the Pope's book. Like, past the line where he said the thing about the cave. "What some neglected was that just a few sentences down, the pope states that even today, 'No representation of the crib is complete without the ox and the ass,'" Pullella tells us. The Pope actually approves of your traditional mangers, complete with your donkeys, and your oxes, and your three kings, and your Mother Marys, and whatever else people put in manger scenes theses days. "The tradition of the ass and ox came from reflecting on parts of the Old and New Testaments. Christian iconography then adopted the motif early in Church history to show that even animals knew Jesus was the son of God," Pellula says. Oh, well, sorry Mr. Benedict.
And the whole thing about him hating caroling wasn't true, either. The Pope loves caroling, obviously, because he is a human with a real human heart and emotions and feelings. It even says so, in his book, on the record. It says that he approves of caroling, because angels spoke in song. Only a real Grinch would hate caroling. Gladys is making a special batch of fudge right away.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.