By Rachel Birdsell
Glory hallelujah, praise be and a multitude of other worshipful interjections! We’ve had a miracle.
According to some people, who I’m sure are experts in their fields, it happened the other day when God struck St. Peter’s Basilica with lightning the exact same day that Pope Benedict decided to renounce his Popeablilty.
Some are saying that God zapped St. Pete’s because he was peeved that Benedict called it quits, and was actually aiming for Benedict, but missed because the pope’s gold lame cape temporarily blinded him. God also was not amused when Benedict chose to wave goodbye to the Vatican using only his middle finger.
Another camp disagrees and says that God struck the basilica because he understood that Benedict had to quit because of health reasons. It’s being reported that it was from a head injury, but really he quit because he has horrible bunions and his fancy red Prada shoes were always giving him hell.
I don’t actually know much about the pope other than that he is the Catholic’s top dog and he wears capes, huge hats and carries a stick with a cross on the end of it. I assume it’s a walking stick, but whatever it is, I’ll bet he uses it to whack the cardinals on the head when they get out of line.
A third group of people claims that the video and photos of the lightning strike are faked, and are part of a nefarious plot by the United Nations to take away their guns.
The final camp, of which I’m a proud member, doesn’t think it had anything to do with any omnipotent being in the sky, but rather just lightning striking the closest thing it could find during a thunderstorm, and merely a coincidence that it happened on the pope’s quitting day. Sure, the lightning having a natural cause may be a bit more mundane, but I can live with that. But, for whatever reason there are some people who need to believe there are no coincidences, and that the lightning strike came screaming down from the heavens directly from the Almighty’s right index finger.
Maybe they need the supernatural because they’re lives are super boring. I think that boredom is probably because they’re missing something and believing in the supernatural fills the void. And it’s just not supernatural lightning that makes their heart skip a beat. It’s also ghosts, psychic phenomena, Ouija boards, sun signs, moon signs, telekinesis, angels, demons and things that go bump in the night. Sadly, they have their beliefs confirmed by watching television shows and reading books about the supernatural, even though none of them offer any proof that the mystical is real. (I think the majority of the books’ authors and shows’ producers don’t even believe what they’re spouting, and instead are making money by taking advantage of naive and vulnerable people.)
Speaking of the pope … since he isn’t going to need his walking stick anymore, if we used it to give these charlatans a few good whacks on the head, it may just make them see the light. And that would be worthy of a glory hallelujah and a thunderous amen.
Rachel Birdsell is a freelance writer and artist. You can drop her a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or catch her on Facebook at facebook.com/RachelABirdsell