Habemus Memes: The top 5 memes dedicated to Pope Francis
By John Stegeman The Catholic Telegraph
Memes, almost by their very nature, are modern. The world means “a cultural item that is transmitted by repetition in a manner analogous to the biological transmission of genes” but as we’ve reported before, it really just means a funny photo with some funny text on it that gets shared around the internet.
In a sense, a meme is an editorial cartoon with a photo. With Pope Francis being the first pope elected with the world’s culture firmly entrenched in the social media world of Facebook, Instagram and the rest of the web, many memes are already circulating in honor of His Holiness. Below are the five best memes we’ve found online.
5. Many who watched and waited for the white smoke to appear above the Sistine Chapel saw the appearance of this seagull. On Twitter, the bird had a pair of accounts (@SistineSeagull, @ConclaveSeagull). While the bird made for better TV than a static chimney, perhaps we should have taken it as a sign.
Our new pope, the former Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, took the name Francis for St. Francis of Assisi, who was known for his love of animals and is often portrayed in art surrounded by birds. The new pope has yet to say much about animals, but at the least it is a fun coincidence.
4. What do you get when you cross tasty chicken, donut holes and papal humor? The No. 4 meme on our list.
Also from the Catholic Meme’s Facebook group, this meme turns Popeyes’s chicken into Pope Yes! chicken and Entenmann’s Pop’ems donuts into Habemus Pop’ems.
Funny and delicious.
Some runner ups to this meme had similar plays on words. For example, “Star Wars: A New Pope,” and “When one pope resigns, another always popes up.”
3. The world loved Pope John Paul II and also Pope Benedict XVI (now Pope Emeritus). Both were good men and good popes. Both were also humble men.
But our new Pope Francis seems to be on a whole new level of humbleness, and it is those memes that best speak to just who he is.
In this meme, Pope John Paul greets the world for the first time, arms lifted high in greeting to the pilgrims gathered below.
He wears, as is proper, a stole and cape, appropriate to his position.
Then we see Benedict XVI, greeting the crowd the same way, wearing about the same thing. Both he and John Paul II smile broadly.
Nothing wrong with any of that, mind you, but then we have Pope Francis. In a simple white cassock, wearing the cross he wore as archbishop, looking humble, and giving a simple wave. He greeted the crowd with “Good evening,” and even asked their prayers for him before giving the blessing.
2. If you haven’t already heard the story, then accept that this picture is worth 1,000 words.
After being elected pope, Pope Francis rode the bus back to their hotel with the cardinals, choosing to pass on the papal sedan that had been made available.
While one on hand you might feel bad for the driver that told his friends he’d be driving the new pope around on Wednesday, one can’t help but be impressed with his desire to be seen as part of the Church, and not above it. Pope Francis, if you can’t tell, is the only one wearing white.
1. And the No. 1 meme is….
This one. As you saw in No. 2, he took the bus back to the hotel. When Pope Francis got there, he picked up his bags and paid his hotel bill personally. Presumably, the staff didn’t need to be reminded the reservation was likely under Bergoglio, not Francis.
Now there’s nothing wrong with a pope sending an assistant to do these tasks, but the former Cardinal Bergoglio was a man of the people, and it seems he intends to continue that into his papacy.