Monday, 20 September 2010

Post-Pope Monday papers (3) The Times

The newspaper of the Anglican liberal establishment ignores the papal visit altogether in its editorial columns but dedicates two pages to yesterday's events on pp 6-7. Ruth Gledhill reports on how Cameron "enlisted the Pope in his vision of Britain as a compassionate society", and in a box profiles Cardinal Newman. There follow two reports on the believers and the sceptics. Valentine Low with the former reports from inside Cofton Park, while outside the Park Will Pavia hung around with those on the outside. Neither report is interesting.

On p. 8 the paper's Rome correspondent, Richard Owen -- one of the VAMPs -- describes the atmosphere on board the plane back: "euphoric". He quotes the Pope's spokesman, Fr Lombardi, saying that "many, many people listened with profound interest to what he had to say". He thinks that the visit may not only change Britain, but the Pope too, noting that Benedict XVI had met in his four days a huge variety of races and beliefs. Owen noted the Pope's emphasis in his departure speech on Britain's "healthy pluralistic society" with its "many religious traditions". Owen adds: "This is not the language of the man who was elected Pope five years ago".