Julie with a B

Friday, May 13, 2005
Friday pun

Candidate for the Papacy Who Didn't Get the Job

Hans Grapje was educated in a Catholic school and as a young man aspired to become a priest, but was drafted into the Army during WWII and spent two years copiloting B17s until his aircraft was shot down in 1943 and he lost his left arm.

Captain Grapje spent the rest of the war as a chaplain, giving spiritual aid to soldiers, both Allied and enemy.

After the war, he became a priest, serving as a missionary in Africa, piloting his own plane (in spite of his handicap) to villages across the continent. Father Grapje rose through the stations of the Church and became a Bishop, and eventually Archbishop.

In 1997, Archbishop Grapje was serving in Zimbabwe when an explosion in a silver mine caused a cave-in. Archbishop Grapje went down into the mine to administer last rites to those too severely injured to move. Another shaft collapsed, and he was buried for three days, suffering multiple injuries, including the loss of his right eye. The high silver content in the mine's air gave him purpura, a life-long condition characterized by purplish skin blotches.

His long and selfless service resulted in elevation to Cardinal in 2001.

Although Cardinal Grapje devoted his life to the service of God as a scholar, mentor, and holy man, church leaders agreed: he would never ascend to the Papacy. And for good reason ...

No one wanted a one-eyed, one-armed, flying purple Papal leader.

(wish I had written this one.... but no... that charming Anonymous person did)


<< Home

Powered by Blogger