Thursday, April 17

Pope and the red loafers

Should the pope die or become too ill to continue as pope? was the first line I read to know about the present Pope in the January 2005 Time magazine which caught my attention. It quoted unnamed Vatican sources as saying that Ratzinger was a front runner to succeed John Paul II. Even before his election as pope in April 2005 he was identified as one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine.

I can’t forget the Benedict's first public appearances on April 19, 2005 when Cardinal Ratzinger was elected as the successor to Pope John Paul I. His cassock was way above the ankle, revealing white socks and bright red footwear.

Yes the bright Red Footwear…The hem was soon lowered a few inches, although he still prefers a sporty around-the-ankle look instead of having the cassock draped over the shoes. Those red shoes made quite an impression.

loved the way he said "At a certain point, I prayed to God 'please don't do this to me'...Evidently, this time He didn't listen to me"

His red Loafers gave him the name the” Prada Pope”.With his penchant for designer-Gucci eye wear and Italian shoes, Pope Benedict XVI is a style icon.

By switching tailors for his taste and comfort he led to "cassock wars" in the holy city by allegedly switching allegiances from the company which has made papal robes for over 200 years to a tailor who has only been in business for a tenth of that time causing Vatican row .

The vintage styles have turned Benedict into something of a fashion celebrity. There have been plenty of companies presenting him the products but his fashion statement never fade away. Be it by donning a red velvet cape trimmed in ermine for the traditional papal visit to the statue of the Madonna or a fur-trimmed stocking cap he wears in winters to save himself from cold.

In fact he walk daily across St. Peter's Square from his home just outside the Vatican walls to his office, wearing a black beret and black overcoat and carrying a worn leather briefcase.

He is fond of playing Piano -Mozart and Bach for relaxation and pleasure. I read somewhere that his former housekeeper Ingrid Stampa was a music teacher before she came to Rome to keep house for the cardinal. They used occasionally to play duets together. She taught the viola da gamba, an antique stringed instrument resembling the modern cello.

But his alliance for brands has always raised questions and doubts?? Like the LG Prada (KE850) phone and Iphone Apple Inc..

Yesterday while watching a news channel once again Pope Benedict XVI Red Prada Loafers at the US trip caught my attention. The visit to tune with the Americans and the President of US is one of the biggest tests for Pope Benedict-To heal the wounds of the sex abuse scandal that rocked the American Catholic Church in 2002…..

Coming back to the stylish professorial Pope a man who knows what he likes…
He loves music, cats, gadgets and is fond of Brands which have always given me fodder for my thoughts.

Because…….. he has always condemned excessive consumerism, especially among youth. He was quoted in International Herald Tribune in December 2007 saying that "Adolescents, youths and even children are easy victims of the corruption of love, deceived by unscrupulous adults who, lying to themselves and to them, draw them into the dead-end streets of consumerism.".

Benedict also said. “Even the most sacred realities, like the human body ... Become objects of consumption — and this (happens) ever earlier, already in preadolescence," the pope has always complained, to early fascination with fashion and physical self-image. "How sad it is when young people lose the marvel, the enchantment, of the most beautiful feelings, the value of respect for one's body,"

But the bishop of Rome, successor of St. Peter, chief of the whole Church, and the Vicar of Christ on earth association with Prada, Gucci, BMW, and Cartier is equating of personal happiness with the purchasing of material possessions and consumption. NOT OF VANITY

Health, friends, fame, wealth, pleasures, singly or all combined, are incapable of filling the void in our hearts. Though in their measure desirable, all earthly goods are limited, and man's capacity for good is unlimited.

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