Friday, December 25, 2009

Pope Goes Down

I'm gonna burn like a chestnut roasting on an open fire for this, but stiiilllllll...

Last night, before the start of the traditional Christmas Mass at St. Peter's Basilica, a lady in red jumped over the railings and tried to bum rush the Pope. Papal security was able to intercept her, but in the ensuing melee, His Holiness was dragged down into the fray, anyway. Literally.

Apparently, this seems to be an annual event, as the same thing
happened last year with - YES, THE SAME WOMAN! The Pope's quarterbacks managed to tackle the crimson-clad linebacker that time, unlike this year's touchdown when she finally scored.

Which beggars the question: who WAS that Scarlet Woman, and what did she want for Christmas? A head-start on Papal benedictions? Was it Christiane Amanpour rushing for a scoop? Or just some demented fashionista after the Pope's signature red Pradas? 

According to an AP report:

VATICAN CITY — A woman jumped the barriers in St. Peter's Basilica and knocked down Pope Benedict XVI at the start of Christmas Eve Mass, but the 82-year-old pontiff got up unhurt and proceeded as planned with Thursday's service. 

Witness video obtained by The Associated Press showed a woman dressed in a red hooded sweat shirt vaulting over the wooden barriers that cordoned off the basilica's main aisle and rushing toward the pope before being swarmed by bodyguards. 

The video showed the woman grabbing the pope's vestments as she was taken down by guards, with Benedict then falling on top of her.
A Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Ciro Benedettini said the woman appeared to be mentally unstable and had been taken into custody by Vatican police. He said she also knocked down Cardinal Roger Etchegaray, who was taken to hospital for a checkup.

"During the procession an unstable person jumped a barrier and knocked down the Holy Father," Benedettini told The AP by telephone. "(The pope) quickly got up and continued the procession."

It was the second year in a row that there had been a security breach at the Christmas Eve service and this was the most serious incident involving the public in Benedict's five-year papacy. At the end of last year's Mass, a woman who had jumped the barriers got close to the pope but was quickly blocked on the ground by security.

That woman too wore a red hooded sweat shirt, but Benedettini said it was not immediately known if the same person was behind Thursday's incident.

There was one casualty: Cardinal Roger Etchegaray, who fell and broke his femur. Hence, Etcheg-ARAY! Incidentally, though his surname sounds oddly Pinoy, Cardinal Etchegaray is French.  But in the first video, you can clearly hear some Pinays at around the 0:16 mark, and later on towards the end of the clip.

At any rate, the Pope was unhurt and commenced the Mass to rousing applause. So, nothing more to see here, folks, move along, move along, and back to our regular Christmas programming.


  1. can i tackle you down for my christmas gift?

    and you know very well what i want for christmas ;)

  2. This has got to be the best xmas present ever. Saw this on CNN this morning and I can't help but roll on the floor laughing [literally] while watching them do this on replay. for 5 times! LIKE WTF.

    Besides, he looks like the fucking devil. totally deserves it.

  3. @ Eternal Wanderer : You want a vibrating Hello Kitty with six settings. I already placed an order with Gift Gate.

    @ Herbs D. : See, I like you because you're evil. Bwahahahahahahahahahaha! I don't know exactly where I stand on the Ratz, but hmm yeah he's the Holy Roman Emperor Palpatine, looks-wise.

  4. Rude: i bet virgie ramos has a stash of it in her closet! lolz

  5. @ Eternal Wanderer : Is that grinning gargoyle still alive?

  6. Hala, pati si Santo Papa di pinatawad!

  7. @ Ming : He's just the Vicar of Christ. Besides, maybe that woman was just a big fan. Of Kathy Bates in Misery proportions.

  8. Maybe she's actually advertising the red sweater of Gap via viral.

  9. @ joelmcvie : Well, there's a thought! This certainly trumps those Salahis who gatecrashed that White House dinner any day.

  10. @ thecurioscat: "Hello, Your Holiness. I'm your biggest fan!"

  11. people are getting violent these days... with the pope, that south american president and ampatuan getting tackled, battered with an slr or thrown bottles at.

    crazy world.

  12. @ engel : Maybe they just had too much eggnog.

  13. so kailangan talagang italized yung word na LIKE haha. parang facebook lang ha. :p

  14. She's nuthead little red on crack.

    I hate what she did. I hope this would remind the vigilant security to be careful even if the Pope is within the basilica.

    (those red shoes, the Vatican claims, are not Prada but were made by someone in Rome :) )

  15. @ Herbs D, : Facebook is the devil, Herbs D. heheheh.

    @ Brent : The reports say she's mentally unstable and was off her medication. Who knows? Maybe she just wanted a hug. Or a miracle.

    The Pontiff's security bubble has always been more permeable than those of more secular heads of state. I guess that's where God comes in, eh? To be fair, JP II survived that assassination attempt decades back, so maybe angels make better bodyguards after all.

    Also, since that was an ex-cathedra pronouncement, those red shoes are Prada, Vatican claims notwithstanding. :P

  16. i must say i had a feeling you were going to write about this when i saw it on the news. this woman's crazy. i'm not catholic so whatever happens to the pope is none of my beezwax. i just feel bad for the guy. it's bad enough that he has to wear that darn outfit day in day out. i'm guessing there was nothing in the job description about an annual tackler. haha

  17. @ citybuoy : Damn, haha am I getting predictable? I must start writing about rainbows and unicorns and sunshiny days. Just for shits and giggles.

    Anyhow, I don't feel bad for the Ratz. He's a tough old bird (ex-Hitler Youth, Sieg Heil Holy Queen!) plus he gets to wear Prada on behalf of Catholic donations worldwide.

    And no, pops, you can't excommunicate a Catholic whose membership has lapsed. Besides, I've always wanted to be a Buddhist.

  18. rainbows, unicorns and sunshiny days? that sounds more like me. haha

    does he really get to wear prada? he doesn't really strike me as the prada wearing type. parang mas bagay ang blue soda. hahahaha

    i'm not gonna even touch the whole religion thing lest we spark another debate. haha

  19. "To be fair, JP II survived that assassination attempt decades back, so maybe angels make better bodyguards after all." - Correct. :) But then the Pope before him died, if I remember correctly, after being shot. Then again, all in God's hands.

    I suddenly imagined those Armadillo McQueen shoes on the Pope. Bad. O_O

    Happy New Year!

  20. @ citybuoy : Apparently he wears Geox Uomo light loafers, Serengeti sunglasses from Bushnell, and totes an iPod, too.Viva Il Papa Fashionista!

    @ Brent : JP II's predecessor, John Paul I a.k.a. "The 33-Day Pope", did not die from being shot. Well, if you believe conspiracy theories, he did die after a shot - of poisoned tea.

    "More tea, Your Grace?"

    And on another fashion note, regarding the debate over whether or not The Ratz Wears Prada: