Have you ever wondered what Carmelites talk about? When we talk, that is. Most of our day we keep silence, but when it’s time for recreation, you can be sure we take advantage of the chance to exchange a few words. Hmm, maybe more than a few.
Well, the other day at lunch we had a rather unique conversation. I don’t remember who posed the question, but it set off a series of reflections: “What do you think we are going to call John Paul II when he is beatified?” We experimented with different options: Pope Blessed John Paul, Blessed Pope John Paul, Blessed John Paul.
Of course we thought about other saints. Mother Teresa is just called Mother Teresa by most people. Gregory is called Pope Saint Gregory. How exactly do we determine the title of saints and blesseds?
I am sure there is a theological explanation and a very technical way to decide such matters, but over a turkey sandwich in a humble little Carmelite refectory in Southern California, we did not really have too much access to anything terribly official. So we resorted to speculation.
You call ’em as you knew them.
So, since most of us knew that little Albanian who gave her life to the poorest of the poor in India as Mother Teresa, we will probably continue to call her that. Then again, how many of us can say we were that close to Gregory? So he keeps the more formal title.
But to answer the original question, how did we end th conversation at lunch?
JPII, we love you!