#0029 Boehner wept
John Boehner, current speaker of the House (of Representatives of the US Congress) is known for displaying tears when he is touched by some sentimental emotion. The main reason I was inspired to write about this is: John Boehner is a high-profile conservative Republican and I am NOT. What’s more, I’ve called him an a**hole to his face (or to his face on my TV screen) and felt a little bit better for doing so. In short I just don’t like the guy—at least I didn’t think I did until I saw him standing next to the Pope and crying his eyes out as the Pope spoke. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0RnHtJqtYcY
There was more footage of him crying while sitting behind Pope Francis as he addressed the joint houses of Congress. As the Pope spoke to the room filled with dignitaries, the camera moved around to some different ones so we, the television audience, could see their body language and the expressions on their faces. The Pope spoke of things that were on his mind and in his heart with an apparent freedom and unpretentiousness not often expressed in that place. He spoke in a language which was obviously strange and unwieldy for him; despite this, he seemed very comfortable with the message he had for these important men and women. From time to time the camera caught others in the room whom also seemed moved by something the Pope had said. All the while, over the Pope’s left shoulder, John Boehner was struggling to maintain his composure and failing miserably at doing so. What He was feeling—what it was that was stirring in Boehner wasn’t the Pope’s words—it was truth and the authenticity of God that was filling the room. The Holy Ghost was in the house and John Boehner knew it—knew it in every cell of his being. I knew what was going on there as I watched the event as it came live-streaming into my living room, for I too have been John Boehner and have struggled to maintain composure while caught up into the presence of God’s truth. It’s quite a challenge to maintain composure…I find it’s best to not try and fight it and just let it go. So from my vantage point there was little doubt that God and God’s truth was availing those present in the room and all of us who were watching on TV. He who has and ear to hear…
In the Pentecostal denomination the worshipers believe that the evidence of God’s presence manifests itself as people in the room start speaking in gibberish. This is supposed to be what the Bible refers to as speaking in tongues. Other similar manifestations come through people as laughing or giggling uncontrollably; others will fall down as the minister touches them; others are cured of some physical malady by someone who’s been pre-identified as having the gift of healing. Such glorious manifestations are supposedly strong proof that God’s powerful presence is in the midst of the people. This may well be the case; but I—like Boehner–am moved by the still small voice of God; by the sense of knowing in my soul and the resounding hush that will inevitably follow such an experience.
The Pope exited the Congress hall accompanied by VP: Joe Biden, Boehner and a few others. They moved onto the balcony overlooking the plaza where a crowd of 1000s awaited their arrival; by then the Spirit was so thick that Boehner couldn’t contain himself any longer and his tears flowed freely. “Ah, Mr. Boehner, you are in the company of truth now—actual truth—and it feels so good, doesn’t it?! It’s hard playing the game of politics when your heart is cut from a different cloth than your L-Directed brain and your echo-chambered narratives, isn’t it?! Saul, Saul, Why do you kick against the pricks?” The very next day, Boehner resigned and in so doing, he left the House of Representatives in a tailspin. As he approached the lectern to deliver the news of his resignation he was heard singing Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah Zip-A-Dee-A My oh my, what a wonderful day. Is he getting ready to hand over his gavel to prepare himself for something really big?
Meanwhile on the other side of the story, the Pope keeps on coloring outside of the lines of his infallibility image, as it were, as he continues on his religion-defying romp across the globe. A bit of backstory on early days of his pontifical reign sees him doing some political housecleaning in the ranks of bishops, cardinals and others. One such case involves a Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke. Check him out here and see how this pompous ass’s self-image clashes with the Pope’s.
Burke, while still only archbishop of St. Louis, MO. demonstrated he wasn’t just another flashy skirt but had some real conservative teeth as he is seen running to the assistance of fellow conservative Sean O’Malley…
Amid questions of how Catholic leadership will respond to the pro-choice senator, Kerry’s archbishop — Boston’s own Sean O’Malley — has refused to clarify a statement last summer that pro-choice Catholics are in a state of grave sin and cannot take communion properly.
Adding to the fray in February, St. Louis Archbishop Raymond Burke forbade Kerry from taking communion while campaigning in the area due to Kerry’s stance on abortion and possibly stem cell research.
The two archbishops’ admonishments shed light on the challenges faced by the liberal senator, as he tries to woo Catholics, which represent 27 percent of registered voters.
The denial of communion to a Catholic eminent politician would be unprecedented. Experts cite such action as forbidden by Catholic canon law, except in extreme cases that do not apply to Kerry. Communion is a central tenant of Catholicism, meant to recognize Jesus’ last supper. (http://www.cbsnews.com/news/kerrys-communion-controversy/)
I wonder if O’Malley and Burke were shedding Boehner-sized tears during the Popes address to the joint houses and the crowds of 1000’s outside the capitol. If not—why not? Would they weep if it were Jesus, Himself giving the same message in perhaps His own chicken English? What do you suppose Burke would wear to such an event?