Bergoglio Promotions

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By popular demand Ditta Jorge Mario Bergoglio is offering for sale (exclusively through this website) high quality novelty goods which every Catholic will want.

You have the SUPERPOPE © tee-shirt now you will want to collect:

The SUPERPOPE © coffee mug (comes in three pontifical sizes: merciful, simple, and frugal).
The SUPERPOPE © tea towel (as used by the Holy Father to dry dishes in the Casa Santa Martha).
GAME OF MITRES ©, the SUPRERPOPE ©  interactive game for all the family (featuring the infamous St Gallen Group ™)
Children will love the SUPERPOPE © balloon (filled, of course, with nothing but hot air)
Special orders can be taken for the SUPERPOPE pillow and duvet set (treat yourself to a plenary indulgence every night of your life!).

We are sorry that the SUPERPOPE ©  waxwork, so popular for church sanctuaries throughout the world, and especially in South America, has had to be discontinued

Customers will, however, be delighted to note that we have recently completed, with a company in Taiwan, an order for 500,000 life-size inflatable SUPERPOPES © which we hope will be delivered in time for Christmas.

Watch this space for further merchandizing!

 

Convertitis

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Dear Frank,

A friend brought to my attention Austen Ivereigh’s insightful article in CRUX, and I am very sorry.

I cannot tell you how distressed I am that your whole programme is apparently being so viciously undermined by converts (most of them from the Anglican Communion).

You and I share the same goals and are walking the same path. When we Anglicans come to a bridge which others have found perilous, we cross it intrepidly, showing that it will carry the weight of the Catholics waiting to  follow. We did that with women priests and bishops, and we will no doubt do the same for same-sex marriage. We are the bell-wethers of forward-looking catholicism.

You and I know that the game is to jettison the rigid traditionalists (who are a pitiful few, let us face it) in order to garner in the unchurched masses, who, gratifyingly,  are not weighed down by a devotion to scripture or a knowledge of the Fathers.

I think you will agree we did a good job of getting rid of our own die-hards in the ‘90s. It’s just such a shame that they have come over to you.

I really am sorry about that. It was with a sigh of relief , in a previous age, that we saw the back of trouble makers like Newman, Chesterton and Knox. But it does seem unfair that just when you have embarked on a great new programme of inclusivity, renewal and mercy, that you should be burdened with another influx of ex-Anglican intransigents.

I blame Benedict and Rowan. Rowan should have kept them in and Benedict shouldn’t have let them in. Still, the damage is done.

We must agree not to make the same mistakes next time

Yours apologetically,

Justin

Auntics

Mary Wimbush 'Jeeves & Wooster' (1990) 1.3

We were coasting along nicely, I thought.

Jeeves had done a spiffing job getting Madeline safely back in the arms of Gussie Fink -Nottle; and I was once again a free man.

Thoughts turned, as they are wont to do, to the lovely and talented Gwladys Pendlbury and the epic portrait of Aunt Agatha.

‘What’s it like Jeeves?’ I said toying with a smoked salmon sandwich in anticipation of its arrival.

It is very big, Sir, ‘said Jeeves in a coldly non-committal manner.

‘Never mind about the size, Jeeves, what about the likeness?’

‘About that Sir, I could not possibly say. But Miss Pendelbury is of the opinion that it captures and portrays something of the ‘soul’ of Lady Worplesdon.’

‘Ah, what a sweet darling talented girl she is! To be able to portray the soul! And even more remarkable of her to discover that Aunt Agatha has one.’

‘Precisely so, Sir. Shall I bring in the soulful canvass? The porter carried it up only an hour age. ‘

As Jeeves tootled off to root out the relevant package, I have to admit that I allowed myself to bathe in a warm pool of self-admiration.

It was I, Bertram Wooster, who had devised the scheme of mollifying the belligerent Aunt with a flattering portrait by an up-and-coming artist. (One to whom Madeline Bassett could scarcely hold the proverbial candle in any respect.) It was Bertram who would come frequently to the elderly relative’s mind as she viewed said art-work, hoist above her drawing-room chimney piece.   And to Bertram would flow the financial benefits of that new-found tenderness and admiration

This passing moment of euphoria was only interrupted by Jeeves’s entrance bearing a scarcely identifiable portrait of a formidable female clad from head to toe in black bombazine. It had, so far as one could see, only one eye, which was compensated for by several hands.

‘Good heavens, Jeeves, you could have warned me that the delicious Gladwys was a pupil of that Picasso fellow. Aunt Agatha is nothing if not a devotee of Landseer. This will never do. ‘

‘In more ways than one, Sir,’ replied Jeeves with a wry smile.

‘Nothing, I swear,  Jeeves, could be worse than this modernist travesty. Why! It’s no more than a pot of paint thrown in Aunt Agatha’s face.’

‘I fear it can get infinitely worse, Sir. Word at the Junior Ganymede Club has it that Lady Worledsdon, following in the footsteps of her suffragette mother, has taken advantage of the proposals brought forward by our enterprising Equalities Secretary Ms Maria Miller, and had herself declared a MAN, under the name of Marmaduke Gregson. Mr Gregson, I surmise, will not want a daily reminder of his former status hanging in the parlour.’

‘Good God, Jeeves, this is a disaster : portrait useless, hopes of gain dashed and no Aunt Agatha! What does old Worplesdon make of it all?’

‘He, Sir, has emigrated to Venezuela.’

Heritage?

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Today’s guest blog comes to us from Dame Helen Ghosh, Director General of the National Trust. She writes:

Many of you will think of the NT as an organisation for preserving buildings and landscapes of aesthetic and cultural interest. And so it is. But many people are unaware that  – from the founding days of Octavia Hill and Beatrix Potter –  the Trust has exercised another important function: that of social engineering. Today, in the spirit of our noble founders, we are in the forefront of the up-coming Gender Revolution.

2018 is set to be our year of ‘Gay Britannia’. So, if your relatives formerly lived in one of our properties and there is a skeleton in your closet (or even in the attic), let us know. We can make money out of the dear old perverts even now.

Tastefully conducted tours by look-alikes of Sir John Gielgud or Sir Ian Mackellan will generously fill the visitors’ time with salacious innuendo, accompanied by Noel Coward songs in every room, including the commodious facilities.

But this is not all.

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In some of our more spectacular venues there will be special attractions. Visitors will be able to take short trips on the lake at Petworth in the very punt in which Roy Jenkins and Anthony Crosland made love in Oxford back in the bad old days..

 

In the long gallery at Montacute House there will be an arrangement by Tracey Emin of dirty sheets said to have been used by Oscar Wilde and Lord Alfred Douglas in the Cadogan Hotel.

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We are also thrilled that a massive grant from the Sir Elton John Charitable Trust is enabling us to transport from California, and re-erect in Stowe garden, the public lavatory in which George Michael famously propositioned a police office. It will have been saved for the nation!

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Beside it will be a fully interactive visitor centre, with cafe and gift shop, designed by award-winning architect Norman Foster.

 

Finally, at our magnificent Georgian Theatre Royal in Bury St Edmunds we will be staging a traditional pantomime entitled ‘Jack and Beanstalk (geddit?)’ in which all the characters, according to the robust British tradition, will change sex between acts.

Something for everyone!

Right Ho, Jeeves!

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‘Ice and lemon in the gin and tonic, sir?’ asked Jeeves superfluously.

‘Oh, Jeeves ,’ I replied, ‘Rather! Is the pope a catholic?’

It must have been a figure of speech which had unaccountably passed him by. (I have always suspected Jeeves of being a left-footer in his spare time.)

‘I regret to say, Sir, that the post is presently occupied by a gentleman of Argentinian extraction about whom many have severe doubts.’

‘And what precisely are these doubts, Jeeves’ said I, reaching for an olive.

‘Doubts about his orthodoxy; doubts about his intentions; and doubts, frankly, about whether he is Pope at all.

‘Quite preposterous, Jeeves! Where do you get theses notions? These ‘doubts’ can’t amount to much. After all the Man is supposed to be infallible, isn’t he? All you have to do is to ask him, and you’re bound to get the right answer.’

‘If I may say so, Sir, you pinpoint the problem with your accustomed perspicacity. But the problem is one of rudimentary communication: the Argentinian gentlemen in question either issues forth gnomic utterances like the oracles of old, or says nothing at all.’

‘That’s a rum one, I’ll grant you,’ I had to concur. ‘So what of the poppycock about his not really being the Pope at all? Where does that come from?’

‘Apparently, Sir, it is rumoured that a cabal of cardinals, led by a Belgian called Danneels feloniously arranged the election after clandestine meetings in Sankt Gallen in Switzerland.’

‘I know where St Gallen is,’ I replied curtly. ’Were they skiing?’

’I think not, Sir. They would, I surmise, be too elderly for the pistes. They were plotting.’

‘Shame on them, wasting good snow like that! Foreigners !Anyway, I flatly refuse to believe in your Danneels chappie. He clearly doesn’t exist. There are only two famous Belgians, as everybody knows – Poirot and Tintin.

‘Indeed, Sir,’ agreed Jeeves, murmuring Cesar Franck under his breath.

‘What ho! So much for the G&T. What’s for luncheon?’

‘Macaroni again, I fear, Sir.’

Change of Address

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The Ancient Society of Pope Julius II

Special announcement.

In response to recent unfavourable publicity about its meetings in the Palazzo Pucci,
the Society (a gay club for lonely Monsignors and their sympathizers),
has decided to take the radical step of relocating
to Southwark Cathedral
on London’s South Bank.
We are grateful to the Dean of Southwark (long an Honorary Member) for this imaginative ecumenical gesture.
We are sorry for the inconvenience caused.
It is hoped that special rates will be negotiated with EASYJET, and that there will continue to be dancing in  the aisles,
and a bufeet supper.

Southwark Cathedral

Honest Broker

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with apologies to The Daily Telegraph

Dear Frank,

I am writing this letter, of all places, from Khartoum.  It is not so hot here as I feared it might be, but things are certainly getting hotter back home. The cabinet is falling apart; the PM is on holiday; and the Chancellor is on the rampage. I thought I ought to confide in you that (in all modesty) I think my time has probably come.

You will remember that I suggested a cross-party commission to steer the Brexit negotiations, chaired by an honest and trusted broker (i.e. ME!) Well, my guess is that they have tied themselves in such knots that they now have no other option. I am expecting the letter to arrive at Lambeth any moment.

This is my Thomas Beckett moment! How was it Eliot phrased it: ’To be the king’s right hand, no, be the King’? (I only saw an amateur production in a church hall in Wythenshawe, so I can’t be sure). But I confess that I am getting cold feet already. Does martyrdom lie waiting? Can I do it? Could anyone do it? Should I take it on?

I know you will come out with your usual evasion: ‘who am I to judge?’ But, Frank, this is serious! It could be the making of me. Do try to give some sort of a steer to a chap. Isn’t that what Popes are for?

Yours in confused elation,

Justin