Anyone who really knows who I am will tell you one thing about me – I love being Catholic! Jesus Christ, His Blessed Mother, the Holy Scriptures, the Doctrines & Dogmas of the Church, the Sacredness of the Holy Mass, Adoration & Benediction, the Traditions, the Saints, the Relics, the Sacraments, Gregorian Chant, the Byzantine Rite, breathing with both lungs of the Church (East and West), the Papacy, and the 266 Popes that define Apostolic Succession from Saint Peter to Pope Francis.
Boom! I love it all and more. I love it so much that I went to Franciscan University of Steubenville and worked on a Masters in Theology. Catholicism defines who I am as a person. Some people wear their school alma mater on their sleeve; I wear the Catholic Church!
When I first started teaching here in Phoenix about 9 years ago, I was setting up my classroom with many images of the saints, statues, and theological posters, but the one thing that I had to have was a Papal Flag. As I pinned it to the wall in my classroom, one of my colleagues came in my room, looked at the Papal Flag, shrugged his shoulders in a bit of disgust, and then proceeded to ask me – “Are you a Papist?” With a straight face, I replied, “Damn right!” As I reflect on my answer now, was it filled with a little bit of Pride, yes, but you didn’t see his face that day (he didn’t like my picture of St. Francis of Assisi in ecastasy either). You would have thought I pinned up a Nazi flag. The picture below is what the classroom wall with the Papal Flag evolved into after multiple years in the classroom.
So what makes one a Papist or what are the characteristics of a Papist? What I came up with is by no means an infallible list, although Papists have a love for Papal Infallibility. Here are my five characteristics of a Papist (rated from 5 to 1.) –
5. A Papist stays awake throughout the night to watch Papal Masses (I did this today), watches Beatifications and Canonizations of previous Popes, and even travels to Rome on occasion for such events if financially possible.
4. A Papist is Obedient & Faithful to the Magisterium and Her teachings.
3. A Papist loves the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church given to us by Jesus Christ himself and founded upon the ROCK, Saint Peter.
2. A Papist Defends the Pope from attacks in and outside of the Catholic Church (nowadays through Social Media but the old avenues as well)
1. A Papist is Proud to be a Catholic and is willing to be mocked and ridiculed for the Pope and the Catholic Church.
The 266th Papacy of the Catholic Church begins! Are you ready for it? Are you ready for the renewal that Francis could bring to the Church? I know I am, because being obedient to the Pope not only makes one a Papist, but it is what all Catholics are called to do.
God’s will be done.
Viva il Papa Francesco!