(Incidentally, we can reveal exclusively that, seeing the clownish antics of Maltese Bishops Scicluna and Grech, one of the pope's advisers rushed in to see him, saying "The fools! They've given the game away!" Owing to a clerical error, Pope Francis got tough with the "wrong" Malta, and poor Fra' Festing was the unhappy victim.)
In the end, the plan to settle things by Sumo wrestling came to nothing.
"So who else can we push over the edge?" asked Francis of his advisers. They soon came up with a list.
1. The Dalai Lama. It is very doubtful whether the pope has any authority in this case either, but the man is a definite rival. He really is humble and benevolent, and his platitudes are better than the pope's. Of course that would involve the appointment of a new Dalai Lama, but there is one obvious person, with a long experience of writing banalities: Bryony Gordon of the Dalai Telegraph!
2. Kim Jong-un must go. Francis has long pledged to reform the North Curia (memo, check spelling), and Kim is one of the few people who treats dissidents even more ruthlessly than Francis does. To take over this hereditary position, it was advisable to choose someone from the Kim family, so Kim Kar-dashian was the obvious choice.
The new woman in North Curia.
3. "I'm the pope and everything Catholic is under my direct command," says Francis, and so all people running organizations described as "Catholic" are expecting a rude phone call at 4 a.m. This includes Catholic Voices, the Catholic Herald, CAFOD, and cattlegrids.com (the pope's strong Argentinian accent may be responsible for this last one). It does not include the National Catholic Reporter, where the "Catholic" is well known to be an honorific title unrelated to its real activities.
Austen Ivereigh (seen here with Fr Rosica), may get a new job making cattle grids.
4. Last, but not least, Donald Trump is under threat from the pope. Although the USA is not under papal jurisdiction, some of the pope's best friends, such as Fr James Martin SJ, are still in shock that dear Hillary Clinton was so rudely rejected by the electorate. The prospect of Fr Jim taking part in a Women's March in Rome, dressed as a lady's naughty bits, has so horrified the Holy Father that he will do almost anything to prevent this from happening.
BREAKING: a compromise has been found, whereby Fra' Matthew Festing will go quietly, but only if Pope Francis does too. Since neither of them has the right to sack the other, this seems to be the fairest solution.