Rumors of a woman Pope

Pope John the VIII or was it Pope Joan?

Nobody knows if it’s a true story, but during the later part of the 13th century it was believed to be fact. It all happened hundreds of years before that, so its hard to tell truth from fiction.

There was a person who became Pope John VIII and supposedly ruled the Church for over two years from 855 to 858. It was a relatively short papacy and was first mention by Mariano Scoto, a Benedictine monk in a document called the Chronicon. In his writing he mentions the rumor of a woman pope, by the name of Joan who reigned for two years, five months and four days.

The next time, in historical writings, that Joan is mentioned is nearly a hundred years later by another Benedictine monk, Sigiberto of Gembloux. He writes in a work called Chronographia: “It is quite well known that this John was a woman and…having become heavy with child gave birth while she was pope”.

The legend of a woman pope states that her name was Joan and an Englishwoman, born in Mainz, now in West Germany. She apparently fell in love with an English Benedictine monk and dressing as a man went with him to Athens where she studied and became highly educated. The story says from there, she moved to Rome, impressed the Roman Curia with her wit and wisdom and was named a cardinal and then elected Pope.

Supposedly during a papal procession she gave birth and died and was buried on the spot.

For centuries the church has denied there ever was a woman pope and has supplied numerous documents to refute the rumor, but still it persists.

Federal Spending

What is it about being an employee of the federal government that let’s some people think they can use their Government credit card for personal purchases?

It’s a big story in the news today. Billions of dollars worth of purchases using Uncle Sam’s credit cards did not follow proper procedures. Millions of those dollars went to expensive dinners, lingerie, tailor-made clothing, computers and even a breast implant.

The Government Accountability Office conducted the report.

You know what? I’m appalled. I’m angry. That’s my money and your money that some federal worker think is their money simply because they are employed by the government. In my book that’s stealing, it’s embezzling and all who did it should be fired and prosecuted.

I suppose some federal employees think it’s OK to use the “company card” because many members of the House and Senate do the same thing with earmarked funds, better known as “pork barrel spending”. It’s really not much different than unauthorized spending. “Pork” spending has got to stop too.

Frankly, I’m tired of the waste and my lever in the voting booth will show it.

Meditation

Meditation
© 2008 Rolland G. Smith

Beware the black of fear and seizures night
When earthly reason cannot see light’s bright.
For now’s the time to bide your mind and soul
As reason swallows all illusions whole.

Now move your thoughts to where it’s empty space
To thus acknowledge true the wholesome grace
Of joy and wisdom coming from the Source
Where sadness and old pain hold no remorse.

Love holds us in the brace of lasting peace
That comes to all as if it’s a release
To see the life that you have chosen now
As right and just and what you did avow.

Avow, you did, before the counsel light
Before your spirit came into its might
For density is hard to comprehend
When essence is about to matter blend.

Let the poets of this time tell us truth
In teaching to the learned and the youth.
For death does not diminish what I say
It is the listening mind that does decay.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Today is the anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King
© 1995 Rolland G. Smith

I had a dream the other night
And Martin Luther King was there.
He spoke in tones befit the wise
And asked me if I’d share,
The news of how his dream came out,
Since he had been away.

I told him times had changed somewhat
But the dream was still a dream
And somewhere in these many years
Was progress, or so it seemed.
Tell me, he said, what has happened,
Since he had been away.

We’ve legislated out the hate,
I said, but laws can’t touch the mind,
If bias reeks within the heart
There cannot be a human – kind.
It’s still not true, he said,
For he had been away.

And then he said, where he is now,
There is no ONE color bright,
Not black or white, yellow or brown.
There is only a loving light.
It’s the truth I lived, and live,
He said, as he went away.