Paus

Voor iemand die de naastenliefde predikt, deelt paus Franciscus aardig wat tikken uit. Het lijstje met zondaars en ketters wordt met de dag langer, met de wapenhandelaars als laatsten toegevoegd.

Zondag richtte hij namelijk het theologische vuur op zakenlui die winst maken met de fabricage van moordmachines en die zichzelf toch nog christen durven noemen. Franciscus vond dat naar zijn bescheiden mening ‘een beetje verontrustend’ – het woord hypocriet kwam nog net niet uit zijn mond.

Voor de paus lijkt het trouwens elke dag wel de dag van de vurige tongen. Europa noemde hij eens ‘een onvruchtbare grootmoeder die haar ziel verliest’. Zijn eigen bureaucratie, de Vaticaanse Curie, diagnosticeerde hij met ‘spirituele alzheimer’.

Zelfs goede vrienden mogen zijn Argentijnse toorn verwachten. Een nauwe en trouwe medewerker waarschuwde hij ooit, zogezegd om te lachen: ‘Als hij mijn moeder beledigt, sla ik hem in het gezicht’ – wat wil zeggen: klappen op beide wangen.

En als dreigen weinig indruk maakt, roept de paus de hulp in van hogerhand. Toen hij vorige week zijn encycliek over de opwarming van de aarde vrijgaf, gebeurde er iets merkwaardigs, dat doet vrezen voor zijn vijanden. Het document, met felle kritiek op de politiek, stond nog maar net online of twee dagen later werd Joke Schauvliege afgevoerd naar het ziekenhuis: een goddelijke rukwind op de Mont Ventoux had de minister met haar klikken en klakken van de fiets geblazen. CD&V of niet: Franciscus vraagt, de Heer draait.

(Tekst verscheen eerste als ‘Moment’ in De Standaard)

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