QUAERITUR: The Catholic Church is really getting me down. There are so many people who spurn my new initiatives (abandoning the Chinese, introducing the worship of Pachamama, tinkering with the catechism, appointing crazed loonies to the college of cardinals, cosying up to James Martin, dropping the notion of adultery...)
Also, the fraud squad, drugs squad, and vice squad are closing in on all my best mates in Rome. How can I possibly remain Pope? I am seriously thinking of converting to the Anglican church, where nobody would care two hoots about such things.
"Hmm, I wonder whether Fr E can help?"
Father E responds.
There are several options open to you, where you make slight adjustments in your job conditions. For example, you could declare yourself an antipope and move to Avignon, which has a nice bridge on which people dance and throw idols into the Rhone. Or you could imitate your predecessor Benedict XVI and take early retirement, setting yourself up as a Pope Emeritus with no duties apart from praying and drinking beer. Or perhaps you could stay on as bishop of Rome, and let someone else be Pope.
These seats reserved for Popes Emeriti.
Remember that whereas you are Infallible (but please don't put this to the test!) the Church is Impossible - or at least most of its members are. So don't panic.
You are not totally without friends, you know. There is dear little Austen Ivereigh, the writer of best-selling fiction; Massimo Faggioli, the world's top theologian; Spadaro loves you; and there are others. They want you to continue the reform of the Catholic Church, so that it ends up totally unrecognisable.
"We're giving away a free Pachamama idol with every copy of my book!"
You mustn't be demoralised by the sound of idols splashing into the river, cries of "Hello hello hello, Mr Becciu, could you accompany me to the police station, please?" or silly blogs making jokes about Amoris Laetitia. You could hold out for a few more years yet.
Another thing you could try doing is praying. That's the bit where you kneel down, try and look holy, and think about what you're going to have for dinner. Some people also use it as a way of contacting God, but I don't want to put too much pressure on you at this stage.
Oh, and I did I mention the two routes to salvation? (1) Go to Confession. (2) Buy Mystic Monk Coffee!