A Pope For All People

Please note: In 2015, long after I wrote this article, my understandings of the quindecile, a 24° aspect, were born out of the new–mathematically accurate–name for the 165° aspect, now called undecaquartisextile. Please read about the Undecaquartisextile as its related aspect patterns which can be found in the Pluto – Full On series. You’ll find the Pluto – Full On series under the subcategory of Undecaquartisextile, located in the Feature Articles tab. Thanks for your patience with the modification of the name.

September 25, 2015 – in the wee hours of the morning…
Some people command headlines like no others, and you wonder what chemistry they possess that few others do. In the hours since he spoke to the US Congress, I’ve heard Pope Francis compared to a different kind of Nelson Mandela and just kept thinking what an absolutely perfect name he chose to represent himself as the pope who would not only be speaking as the head of the Catholic Church but be capable of embracing the entire world. One television reporter described the pope’s first day and evening in New York City, saying, “What’s amazing about the pope is he’s taken this jaded city and made it unjaded.”

When Nelson Mandela spoke, we listened because he had been through so much and stayed the course to lead his once-apartheid nation. And this man, Pope Francis, has gone into the favelas in Brazil, dangerous places where one doesn’t go unarmed.

Tonight, I heard how he went to a home in a favela in Rio de Janeiro where they had cleared the entire place of guns and weapons for weeks before so he could be as safe as possible, and he sat with a family in a home where 22 people lived “as if he was a grandfather coming for a visit and had a cup of mate [pronounced mah-tay, no accent mark] with them.”

Police searches for drugs and guns in Rocinha slum

Residents walk in Rocinha slum, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on November 17, 2011. Brazilian police occupied the slum four days ago, at an operation aiming to arrest drug gangs and to restore peace among residents. Photo: FABIO MOTTA/AGENCIA ESTADO/AE

favela shot2

This shot is from the favela link above, is from this URL:

But while I had not intended to write about the pope’s visit because every station in the United States was probably going to be saturated with news “throughout the day” as one female anchor said (I think it was Nora O’Donnell, but don’t hold me to that.), it was some of the quotes I heard he had said and some of the most amazing productions I’d seen–like “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” which was simply brilliant tonight. I hadn’t counted on it, but I was glued to the set to watch the show from the moment he began to bring out some of the typically New York City garishness when trying to catch a tourist’s attention: (Mind you, the pontiff was greeted to New York as he stepped off the flight with “New York, New York.” I like the song, but it felt sooo wrong. Anyway…ever seen a pizza decorated with the pope on it?

Well I hadn’t either–until tonight. I had pretty much expected to see the usual display of plates, magnets, plaques, and even stickers on real half-dollars selling 3 for US$25 as keepsakes of the pontiff’s visit–but US$200 rosaries, or a life-sized cardboard standing photo of Pope Francis so you can feel like he’s there with you??? Has the whole world gone mad? I continued to watch the show.

Now as luck would have it–and believe me, with Jupiter in Mercury-ruled Virgo while Mercury is retrograde, don’t expect this to go well–I have very little idea who was on the show besides Maria Shriver, a man named Jim and someone else–all Catholic. But I never saw any list of who actually was appearing on the show tonight! Whether this happened nationally or locally, I don’t know but they were listing everyone from “The Late Late Show” for tonight, and nothing mentioning that it was a special show dedicated to the pope.

Someone described the pontiff as being free and completely unchained, having a “wonderful understanding of the word of God. It comes from the heart,” no notes. “Freedom which is very off-putting to people.”

Jim said, “Being a cafeteria Catholic was a horrible thing. Francis is saying ‘Who am I to judge?’ The reason I’m a Catholic is the notion of mercy.”

Colbert said he liked that Pope Francis “couldn’t be pigeonholed into a left- or right-speech,” a point I think most people in the USA would have appreciated.

Besides Maria Shriver, I know there was a man named Jim, someone else who was male –and later, the Archbishop of Miami came on the show to give Colbert a medal. He wasn’t there long enough, really, for me to get it but perhaps that’s because I’m not a Catholic. Maybe I’d have understood better some of what was going on.

As the show wound down, Colbert brought up another photo of Pope Francis with a quote (I checked it out, and he really said it), “Friendship is something very sacred. … But the utilitarian sense of friendship — to see what I can get out of being close to this person and making myself his friend — this pains me. I have felt used by some people who have presented themselves as ‘friends’ whom I may not have seen more than once or twice in my lifetime, and they used this for their own gain. But this is an experience which we have all undergone: utilitarian friendship.” [Entire interview in which he spoke about “False Friends“] And then he made a smooth segue into “You’ve Got a Friend” in which he was suddenly referring to Pope Francis as “Frank.”

Colbert’s version of “You’ve Got a Friend” – September 24, 2015 (This is the same video as the one I have at the end of the linked news story from the Washington Post this morning.)

Now on the remote possibility that you haven’t yet seen the rat with the slice of pizza, here it is.

Okay, all of that to preface why I want a quick look at his chart and a look at the moment he disembarked from the flight to Washington, DC on the 22nd of September.
Pope Francis - USA chartI’m always amazed at the perfection of how these charts pull together for me, a true gift from the heavens–the same realm, it would seem, that Pope Francis would consider even though his perspectives about astrology and mine might be a few pages apart. How fascinating all the same though to think that he, as the head of the Holy See would arrive when Saturn in Jupiter-ruled Sagittarius sits in the 10th house–its natural home but in a sign we see in the natural zodiacal wheel as the 9th house, Jupiter’s home. And lest we forget, Jupiter–traditionally–rules Pisces too, and we look to 12th house Pisces on the natural wheel as much as we do to Sagittarius for spirituality, theology and higher thought.

I wrote earlier tonight (with edits for clarity), “Many who know me, know I often refer to Pluto as the body where we look ‘for the good of all.’ Pluto is currently transiting Saturn-ruled Capricorn. Consider the position he [the pope] has as the head not only of the Catholic Church–9th house; but as well, as a government leader–10th house: Who better to epitomize the natural 10th house specifically at the Midheaven (MC), than the pope, especially this pope? The quote says it all in doing just that–epitomizing this blend of ninth house thought and tenth house action through the Midheaven. Simply priceless!

Nicholas Kristof - NY Times

Nicholas Kristof posted this as a pointer to his op-ed in the New York Times, mentioned further in this story.

I’ve been thinking about some of what I wrote above, remembering Pope Francis’ freedom and need to move without restriction (consider the plight of the Secret Service agents and police as he wanted to stop to give hugs to babies and children while blessing others along the travel routes), and it really doesn’t surprise me at all to see an even split between the Eastern and Western hemispheres of the chart for the moment he put his feet on American soil for the first time. For him, this was indeed a momentous occasion, although one might not think so with Saturn sitting at the apex of the chart. But take note of the five bodies all clustered in the 3rd quadrant of the chart, making this an above-the-horizon dominance with what he sees perhaps as a long-term relationship between all of those who connected with him and himself.

I noticed what seemed to be a very humble stance, as I’ve seen him do before, and even Neptune as the rising planet seemed to work with impeccable timing on the 2nd house cusp as well. We know well enough already to get that he really doesn’t need the pomp and circumstance for his arrivals; that he’d prefer a smaller simpler car; that he’d prefer to eat with the homeless than to dine with political bigwigs who seem to think they’re making Washington’s wheels turn versus creaking, crawling, frequent stoppages; that he doesn’t need a posh castle with all of the accoutrements associated with the position he holds. And the Mercury-Venus-Sun-Neptune heartbeat of the chart reveals the trip itself through his delivery of those messages he came to express with loving, well-considered thoughts,  to touch people’s hearts with that love and grace, perhaps to enable folks to bathe in the sunshine of his smile–and that of whatever Higher Power in which one believes–with a sense of spiritual compassion.

CBS Evening News reported on the pope’s speech to the US Congress, noting his effort to create an interactive dialogue between lawmakers, to increase immigration based on humanitarian need, to work on the issue of global warming for everyone’s sake, and much more in his roughly 50-minute speech. His efforts to speak in English were nothing short of impressive for a man who apprently had just begun to learn the language. While he slipped a few times, he truly did incredibly well. And what would I say was behind his efforts? Venus rules the ninth house of this chart, bringing to mind his wish to teach children compassion, love and understanding even when the adult world doesn’t get it. Graham Nash of Crosby, Stills and Nash is said to have had similar concerns when he wrote the following:

Even the Moon-Pluto 12th house conjunction in Saturn-ruled Capricorn fits in a chart like this. It points even more to his intensely spiritual nature. But consider his natal chart as the inside focus and the arrival chart now as a transiting view.
Even the Moon-Pluto 12th house conjunction in Saturn-ruled Capricorn fits in a chart like this. It poitns even more to his intensely spiritual nature. But consider his natal chart as the inside focus and the arrival chart now as a transiting view.Natally, Pope Francis has a Moon-ruled Cancer rising with his natal Moon and Venus in Uranus-ruled Aquarius forming a 7th house conjunction. On tonight’s news, local senator Charles Schumer described the pope as “powerful.” What better description for a person whose natal chart reveals Pluto rising in Moon-ruled Cancer? His chart possesses a Western dominance with a third quadrant emphasis but the horizon is evenly divided. He genuinely cares about how others think and feel and considers those thoughts and feelings when he makes decisions.

Now I’ll grant that Chiron can certainly be the Wounded Healer–or rather that people might see this as a natural position for a pope to heal his own wounds by ministering to the sick, the challenged, the weak, and so on. But I also need to keep in mind the completely charismatic energy in this soft-spoken man while taking note of the Uranus-Midheaven conjunction potentially repeating the sizzling sensation we see in Chiron. When we consider this much dynamic energy through Chiron and Uranus and the deeply intense Pluto energy, 12th house Chiron can be all about charisma and sizzle in performance especially since this is the whole focus of his career. This is his stage, so to speak.

If you’re among the 74% of the American Catholic population that have had their hearts stolen by 79-year-old Pope Francis, I don’t imagine you’re especially surprised at this point by now. Third-house Mars in Venus-ruled Libra trines Chiron in Mercury-ruled Gemini while Mercury in Saturn-ruled Capricorn squares Mars. He has the capability and self-confidence to drive his point home with incredible eloquence; and as I write this on Friday morning, the 25th of September, I expect by the time this article is published on the site, we’ll know whether or not he’s had to use this additional tool of communication. He will do so if he feels it’s needed.

His Sun makes a conjunction to the Galactic Center and an out-of-sign conjunction to Jupiter in addition to his having been born just three to four days after a Solar Eclipse at 21 Sagittarius 49, coincidentally in square to the upcoming eclipse of September 28, 2015 at 20 Virgo 10!  It seems like the eclipse may be a precursor to some health issues coming up for this great man. While I am not doing a forecast for him, that does make me somewhat nervous. Hopefully, he will be fine. (If you’re interested in my doing his Solar Return, I will, but that’s not the purpose of this article.)

On the other hand, take note of the outer transits in play now: Pluto conjunct natal Mercury and the 7th house cusp in square to transiting Uranus which made a perfected opposition to natal Mars on September 16 brings to mind his efforts to create world peace through his guidance and prayers. If he can move heads of state and their lawmaking bodies toward more peaceful mindsets, such an effort could actually create the setting needed to bring about a sense of hope for tomorrow.

Pope Francis’ chart actually has six undecaquartisextiles if we add in the Sun-Ascendant with its 54-minute orb, Jupiter-Chiron with a 1°42′ orb, and the largest–Mars-Midheaven with a 4°26′ orb. I personally try to avoid that 5° range, preferring to stay within 3° wherever possible. The undecaquartisextiles I have no doubt fit the bill would be the Moon-Pluto angle with its 44-minute orb, Mercury-Pluto with its 1°28′ orb, and Mars-Uranus with its 1°25′ orb. If you have a sense of Pope Francis as a very nurturing individual, you’ll be quite accurate. His wish to nurture seems to reveal itself through his teachings with a very strongly humanitarian perspective. Here, with humanitarianism in mind, we see the strength of what he offers, with a deeply-rooted desire to make a conscious difference in solving the world’s issues. He works to establish goals and seek out whatever options may be available for long-term planning. His efforts, however, are not the kind one should ever perceive as a means of managing as much as this quest for the growth of humanity in a peaceful world. I would expect he would be the kind to be called a “hands on” individual, willing to pitch in wherever the need may arise.

The Washington Post offered readers a fabulous synopsis of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. While they offered the YouTubes that have now been uploaded, I’m concerned that the article may have a short life, so I’m offering these YouTubes as well.

Although my theological beliefs are probably close to singular to myself, my favorite prayer happens to be the prayer of St. Francis, and it seems especially fitting to place that here with a picture that ties this to Nicholas Kristof’s New York Times op-ed “A Pope For All Species.  But in all fairness to Pope Francis and Mr. Kristof, I confess, I really wish I had said “…For All Species” before he did. It just has that special ring.
Pope Francis found a friend in St Peter's Square in 2013 - TIZIANA FABI-AFP-Getty Images

From Nicholas Kristof New York Times op-ed: Pope Francis found a friend in St Peter’s Square in 2013 – TIZIANA FABI-AFP-Getty Images

The Peace Prayer

Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace;
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is error, the truth;
Where there is doubt, the faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
And where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master,
Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled, as to console;
To be understood, as to understand;
To be loved as to love

For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.
Francis of Assisi

I can’t find a more perfect way to close this thought of Pope Francis’ visit to the United States than this…

Namaste, I love you.

©2015 Michelle Young