'Pray for Me'

Editor’s Note: This article previously appeared in a different format as part of The Atlantic’s Notes section, retired in 2021.

On Thursday, Pope Francis will address a joint session of the United States Congress. Roll Call reports that members of both parties are being recruited to “essentially act as blocking tackles, willing to restrain any of their colleagues intent on trying to reach out for a papal touch as he walks onto the floor of the House.” Cloakrooms and hallways will be blocked—nay, locked—for roughly half an hour as the pope makes his way off the premises.

Francis often says it, but in this case, he’ll really need it: “Pray for me.”

The Atlantic, with seating chart courtesy of TheCapitol.net