I was interviewed on a BBC radio show recently and the following is a transcript of our conversation. BBC RADIO:
It’s an honour to meet with you today.POPE:
My pleasure.BBC RADIO:
What do you consider to be your greatest virtue?POPE:
That’s a good question. I suppose if I was forced to choose one virtue, aside from my love of all people and the fact that I visit children in hospitals, I guess I would have to say it is my humility.
Most people couldn’t stay humble if they were in my shoes--and most couldn’t anyway because mine are Prada
. BBC RADIO:
Why is humility difficult for a person in your position?POPE:
Imagine how difficult it would be to stay humble even though you have everything. Not everyone could do it. I guess that’s why I’m Pope.BBC RADIO:
We sometimes ask our guests how they want to be remembered. What do you want written on your gravestone to sort of sum up your life?POPE:
That’s a tough one, but I guess something like “The Humblest Man (besides Christ) Who Ever Lived or Ever Will Live.”
Actually, I don’t want a gravestone—I’d rather have a tomb if possible. Something like a monument so that it will be sort of exciting to look at. Because I imagine when I die many people will want to visit my burial ground, so I’d like to at least give them something interesting to look at.
Possibly a monument with a giant television screen that would replay my various speeches or something. And there should be ample space for people to leave candles and flowers—if they would like.
We might even want to have a cart or something with someone selling Vatican approved flowers so that people could buy flowers if they forgot to bring some. And I’m not saying they should bring flowers—but in case they forgot, we should have some available. And the profits could be sent to a charity. So everyone wins.
It would be nice to have a petition going on there too. BBC RADIO:
What sort of petition?POPE:
You know, something to get my beatification process going. I’d like to become a Saint as soon as possible after I die.
It would be kind of embarrassing to be in heaven with all these saints and I’m just waiting around for my sainthood. I’m sure they would tease me about it too. I can see St. Paul and St. Francis joking about it with me. It would be funny at first, but I’m sure it would get annoying eventually. I wouldn’t want to resort to making jokes about St. Francis and his conversations with birds.