Monday, November 24, 2008


The usually rather sedate L' Osservatore Romano, Vatican's semi-official newletter, came out recently with a lengthy editorial praising the Fab Four from Liverpool. The Vatican newspaper has apparently forgiven the late English singer John Lennon for saying four decades ago that The Beatles were "more popular than Jesus". In an article praising The Beatles, L'Osservatore Romano dismissed Lennon's much-criticised remark as a youthful joke. On the occasion of the 40th anniversary of The Beatles' "White Album", the paper also praised The Beatles for what it called their "unique and strange alchemy of sounds and words". It is noted that the Vatican newspaper recently got a new editor. It has been reported further that although Pope Benedict has criticised many aspects of modern pop culture, he now allows the newspaper of the tiny independent Vatican state to reflect the reality of the world outside in a way that would have been unthinkable in the days of Pope Paul VI who reigned during the heyday of The Beatles.

I guess the change in the editorial policy is worth trying out, as Catholics do not exist in a vacuum apart from realities such as pop culture, as long as it is recognized in the proper perspective. Hey, Catholics are cool too. I myself enjoyed Beatles music very much, and even keep a collection to this day. The Beatles are famous for their music, not for speaking words of wisdom. I wouldn't put too much attention now to Lennon's past remarks as it were, and I think nobody took it seriously either, although it caused a big uproar at the time. The paper though, made no mention whether the song "Imagine" was condemned anathema. Not that it matters anymore, let it be. Yeah.

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