Pope worsens

Pope worsens

: I’m at MSNBC’s Connected at 5p ET. Was going to do more Schiavo blog links. Sudden switch to the pope as his condition worsens. If you see any good blog notes, please do leave a link the comments.

: Note that bloggers are quoting CNN saying that the Pope received last rites. A theologian called the producer of the show as I hung out saying that’s wrong; he received rites for the infirm (I may be getting the exact name wrong). No confirmation either way on this question but it is a question.

: Later: Not being Catholic, I clearly got the paragraph above wrong. FoxNews said this is known as the last rites.

  • plunge

    This man is one of the greatest heroes of the centruy in his war against communism and totalitarianism. It’s too bad I find his personal views on sexual and philosophical morality so wrongheaded and repugnant. But he’s still a hero. I doubt the next pope will be as impressive.

  • JRP

    Assuming it’s the one they gave him, rite is presently entitled “The Anointing of the Sick”, which has been called “Extreme Unction” and “Last Rights” at various times in history.
    For more detail, see the Catholic Encyclopedia. article here.

  • Of course, you know of the site:
    Also mentioned that the Pope is not being sent to the hospital, an indication that it isn’t as critical as CNN seemed to have heard.

  • From the Wikipedia entry for Anoiting of the Sick:
    “Last Rites is a common but misleading term; the Anointing of the Sick can be received as often as the believer desires and should not be postponed until death is thought to be near, nor is its administration intended to imply an expectation that the recipient is about to die.”

  • You might like to follow this story on our Pope Watch Blog

  • ED Beckmann

    Even the Vatican is involved in Spin, Nowadays.
    The last rites by any other name are still the last rites. Well on second thought spin in the church goes back almost 2000 years. I just remembered “Good Friday”.

  • Christopher

    Saw this via Chrenkoff ..

  • ED Beckmann

    I wonder if the pope has a living Will. If so what does it contain. If he doesn’t it is possible we could have a vegatative but living Pope indefinately. Then what?

  • Hi Jeff,
    Are you somehow related to the Oregonian’s website? I just read something on the blueoregon.com ‘s website which connects you to the Oregonian’s website. It’s downright awful. If you’re interested I’d like to talk to you about improving it. Thanks.

  • Kat

    Yes, he has a living will, and a food tube is not considered life support.

  • Jeff,
    Here’s a list of Catholic blogs.

  • On the local news (ABC for San Diego) the rite was refered to as The Anointing of the Sick. The reporter also noted that JP had a kidney infection. At his age he may not be long for the world.
    For you consiparacy mavens, legend has it that Pope John XXIII was holding on a little too strong on his death bed, so certain parties helped him on his way. For even more conspiracy fun you can tie this in with the death of John Paul I, the Priory of Sion, and the Merovingian dynasty.

  • Dear Jeff,
    It’s admirable that you want to use the right term and are willing to be corrected. Personally, I don’t think it’s that big a deal. After all the Church used the term “last rites” for many years! As a commenter noted above, the name has changed in recent years to reflect the fact that this sacrament is not only for those on their death bed but also for those who are very ill. The idea is that the God grants his healing grace to those in need. In any case, the Holy Father is very ill and it’s possible that he will die soon so the use of the term “last rites” shouldn’t offend anyone.
    Mary H

  • plunge

    “Yes, he has a living will, and a food tube is not considered life support.”
    That’s because the Pope doesn’t live in America, where it is.

  • Horst

    For any person who is about to leave the earth, whether he is a famous leader, a catholic, a protestant, an atheist, or just a normal citizen: leave him alone! A decent person if having anything to say at all, find some good things. If not, just zip it! You are showing yourself to public.

  • Dear Jeff,
    Even though I am not Catholic, I feel a certain affinity toward the Catholic Church because of its original history, and I love the pope very much because I believe he is an extremely good example for a representative of our lord Jesus in his absence. Now I try to hold back painfully swelling tears at the very thought that this wonderful man may soon pass away from us. When he does, all those tears will break loose in a flood of despair for I fear there is no one left on this earth holy enough to take his place. I only hope that the lord will touch his successor’s heart deeply enough the rein just as well in his memory.

  • One of the best Catholic bloggers is Bill Cork, http://billcork.blogspot.com .

  • debra

    The pope received the “sacrament of the sick,” once known as the last rites or extreme unction.
    It is for anyone in a serious illness or condition.

  • scottorrell

    There is a reason we don’t call it ‘last rights’ anymore. To decrease the anxiety of those receiving it. No sick person would ever want to see a priest if they thought that this was the LAST RITEs. The pope himself has recieved the sacrament at least twice. This is an important distinction and I appreciate you trying to get it right when so many in the press rely on their own limited knowledge and perpetuate the myth of last rites.

  • If anyone wants to ask questions about the Catholic Church from knowledgable faithful Catholics please visit St. Blog’s Parish Hall.It’s hosted by Catholic Bloggers.
    Plunge – We’d love to talk to you some more about your reasons for thinking that the Holy Father’s position on sex is “repugnant.” His views are my views so I might be able to shed some light on them.
    Elizabeth, Thankyou for your loving words. I’m sure they are shared by many non-Catholics. Some Catholics could learn a lot from your love for Christ and your ability to see Christ in others. You, too, are invited to join in at our online Parish Hall
    Fay – thanks for the link. Your efforts are helping us to pick up traffic!

  • Steve

    I ran across a few interesting Pope-related links and comments at this site.