Dominating social media a few weeks ago was the news of the Pope using a profanity in a speech to his congregation. The slip-up occurred as he became confused over the language he was reading phonetically. Although we have come to expect a little controversy from the current Pope, this gaffe was nothing more than an accident. Of course, as soon as it was heard, social media users lapped it up, particularly on Twitter where the Pope has his own account.
A Biblical Blooper
He has been both criticised and admired for his efforts to connect with the people. He’s broken down barriers that others before him have put up, to show his one billion Catholic followers that he is a real man. Of course, he is considered God’s voice on earth and he doesn’t shy away from that, but he is also keen to show that it takes only a normal person to be afforded this privilege.
An Easy Mistake to Make
The unfortunate mistranslation came as he tried to hammer home a message of sympathy and understanding in Italian. He said: “I make a heartfelt appeal to the international community to support every initiative on behalf of dialogue and harmony. A heart full of longing for possession is a heart empty of God. For this, Jesus many times chastised the rich because the risk for them to seek security in the wealth of this world is high. In this **** [in this case] the providence of God is made visible as a gesture of solidarity.”
The word he used was one of the worst Italian swear words, but of course what the Pope meant to say was ‘caso’, the word for ‘case’. The difference between the two words is minimal, with the swear word replacing the ‘s’ in ‘caso’ with two ‘z’s.
Either way, he’s certainly not lost any respect over it, as most of those tweeting about the slip-up rose to his defence.