The singular best way to lose in an American presidential election is be Catholic. Here’s what I mean: of the 44 past American presidents plus Trump, only John F. Kennedy has been Catholic, and you know how he ended – assassinated! In fact, the America voters ensured JFK made it abundantly clear to them that he wasn’t gonna sell out to the Pope, and he did give them his word on that. The next person that came closest was John Kerry, who got kicked out at the Democratic primaries. My point is, Americanism and Catholicism appear to be parallel lines; Americans just can’t imagine a POTUS that bows down to the pope, or kisses the Ring of the Fisherman (pope’s ring), symbolic of submission to the papacy.
However, guess where Pope Benedict XVI celebrated his 81st birthday? You’re correct if your guess was the White House. It was an elaborate celebration, one that lasted 90 minutes. In fact, of this event MailOnline writes, “The pontiff’s 90-minute stay at the White House was accompanied by the kind of pomp and pageantry rarely seen even on grounds accustomed to routinely welcoming royalty and the world’s most important leaders.” You may equally not have known that while the American Civil War lasted, the arrowheads of both warring camps, Abraham Lincoln (Union) and Jefferson Davis (Confederates), were corresponding with Pope Pius IX – who replied their letters. Needless to say that the friendship between the Catholic Church and the United States of America is deep!
Moreover, this is squarely a different kind of friendship, a friendship based on benefit. While America got the power and might, the Catholic Church got the intelligence. You don’t need to be told that the Catholic presence is the most present presence ever! Wherever you see Catholic priests and their religious men and women, and they are indeed everywhere, there you have seen the pope – everything is wired back to him. For America, that’s an invaluable asset. When America was after the head of Osama Bin Ladin, for instance, they simply tapped into the Vatican’s surveillance. On the flip side, when Pope John Paul II wanted to shutdown communism, he knew whom exactly to call on – George Bush, Snr.
My point: If the Catholic Church could do this, friendship with benefit I mean, then I see no reason why you should be more Catholic than the pope. While you keep at the traditional friendship, the type built on shared values, also try your hands on this other kind of friendship, the one strictly built on interests and benefits.