Blog Post

Pope Francis as a Superhero

pope superheroCommentary by Susan Brinkmann, OCDS

The  Vatican has put its stamp of approval on the graffiti on the wall of a building in Rome which depicts Pope Francis as a super hero.

The Daily Mail is reporting that the image, spray painted on a wall in Rome by Italian street artist Mauro Pallotta, shows the pope flying through the air like Superman in billowing white robes and cape and with his fist pointing forward. He is wearing a crucifix and carrying his trademark black bags with the word "valores" (values) written across it.

Pallotta told Vatican Insider that he painted the image in this way because he sees Francis as a superhero “like the Marvel superheroes that are metaphors of Greek mythology. In this case it’s modern mythology we’re talking about. Francis is a superhero and he uses his power for the good of the people. That’s why he’s a very 'pop' Pope. In his hand he carries a briefcase with Christian values and a scarf with the colors of the San Lorenzo football team. This makes him more human. He’s human and he’s humble but he’s a superhero," Pallotta said.

The Pontifical Council for Social Communications apparently liked the image enough to post it on its Twitter account along with the message: "We share with you a graffiti found in a Roman street near the Vatican”.

pope rolling stoneThis isn't the only image of the Pope that is turning up in unusual places these days. Francis also made the cover of Rolling Stone this week where he's seen smiling and waving at the camera overtop the title, "The times they are a-changing."

The article refers to the 266th Vicar of Christ as "a man whose obvious humility, empathy and, above all, devotion to the economically disenfranchised" who "has come to feel perfectly suited to our times."

Even though the article treated Pope Benedict much too harshly, which earned it a rebuke from the Vatican, Francis was presented in a positive light.

It appears as though the rest of the world is finally catching on to what most of us practicing Catholics have known all of our lives - the Holy Spirit always gets it right.

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