Practicing what he has long preached, the Holy Father baptized the child of a couple in a civil marriage - as well as a single mother's son ...
Pope Francis has baptized 32 babies in the Sistine Chapel and told their mothers to have no qualms about feeding them there. Two of the infants are the daughter of a couple that did not get married in the Catholic Church and a single mother's son.Unlike his predecessors, who usually delivered long and theology-laden homilies at the yearly event, the pope offered a brief, improvised homily of some 300 words centered on the children.
"Today the choir will sing but the most beautiful choir of all is the choir of the infants who will make a noise. Some will cry because they are not comfortable or because they are hungry," he said in a familiar, relaxed tone to the parents.
Michelangelo's frescoes in the Sistine Chapel are some of the world's most celebrated works of art. The ceiling depicts the creation of man and the altar wall shows a severe God at the Last Judgment.
But the pope told the mothers not to feel intimidated by the surroundings.
"If they are hungry, mothers, feed them, without thinking twice. Because they are the most important people here," he said, speaking in the same room where he was elected on March 13 as the first non-European pope in 1,600 years.
Francis said in an interview last month that mothers should not feel uncomfortable breastfeeding during his ceremonies. - Buenos Aires HeraldDuring the homily, in effect a brief catechesis, Pope Francis explained to the parents that the most important thing they can do is to transmit the faith of their forefathers to their children.
Sadly, some Catholics will be expressing their disapproval.
Viva il Papa!
Update: As to be expected, Deacon Kandra has a very balanced commentary on the situation here.