Pope Francis and how to have dignity when abusing children

Today was the day the mask slipped and a la carte Catholics were left even more defensive than usual, when it turned out – surprise, surprise – the Pope is a Catholic after all.

“One time, I heard a father in a meeting with married couples say ‘I sometimes have to smack my children a bit, but never in the face so as to not humiliate them’.

How beautiful! He knows the sense of dignity! He has to punish them but does it justly and moves on.”

It seems you can be a nice guy – well, nicer than the guy who came before you anyway – and you can spend a fortune on PR telling the world what a nice guy you are, but if you believe it’s okay to beat children, no amount of dignity will cover up the fact that you approve of child abuse.

So, with apologies to Bob Dylan, this one’s for you, Your Holiness.

Met Pope Francis sat on empty pews,
Said he’d give me absolution if his name wasn’t used
He offered blessings up front, if kids were abused
With dignity

You may be offended by what I’ve just said. Work away. You have my permission.

You may also ask what right I have, as a childless man, to condemn any parent for beating their children. Well, Il Papa is a childless man too – presumably – and, as it happens, the childless man he claims to work for once said it would be better that a person be cast into the depths of the ocean with a millstone tied around their neck than to be allowed to harm a child.

I know whose side I’m on.

Donal O’Keeffe

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