The Boris Johnson era has already had one unexpected consequence: Blessed Pope Pius IX is being given his due in Parliament.
The Prime Minister has appointed the Catholic Jacob Rees-Mogg as Leader of the House of Commons. At Rees-Mogg’s first official appearance he was welcomed by another Catholic MP, Edward Leigh, who described Rees-Mogg as “a fellow ultramontane Catholic. I am not sure that many people here know what that means, but my Hon Friend knows – perhaps luckily.” Rees-Mogg replied: “I share my Right Honourable Friend’s admiration for the late Pope Pius IX.”
Incidentally, one useful intercessor for the PM is St Boris of Kiev – whose feast day, July 24, was the day Boris of Westminster took office.
In an irresistible gift to headline-writers, Pope Francis has given the Pontifical Academy for Sciences Hell. That is, the Pontiff has appointed the distinguished physicist Stefan Hell to the Vatican’s science academy.
Professor Hell, a Nobel Laureate, could take a tip from the late Cardinal Jaime Sin of Manila, who fully embraced the comic possibilities of his name: he would greet visitors to the episcopal palace with the words “Welcome to the House of Sin”.
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