"WAS IT 'AS IT WAS' OR WASN'T IT?"
Might as well weigh in on this whole "did he?" or "didn't he?" thing.
Fuzzy wuzzy was an edict. The edict was fuzzy, wasn't he?
But if fuzzy wuzzy got past the bureacracy, it wasn't an edict, was it?
....Having experienced The Passion of the Christ, it would seem virtually impossible to me, that a lover of Jesus could watch this film and walk away without emitting any comment.
...Agreeing to a screening of the film, with the producer waiting outside for a reaction, it would seem barbarically cruel to open the door and say, to that producer, "No comment. Go away now."
...JPII having no comment on a great work of sacred art seems absolutely inconsistent with his own call for "a renewal of that fruitful dialogue that has always existed between the Church and the arts." Ignoring the rest of the world, it would seem to me that he would be encouraging al least to this one artist.
...But ultimately, EVEN IF the Pope said "Movie BLECKKKKKK!" it wouldn't change anything about the beauty and power of this film. We lay people have to all grow up and read Vatican II on the appropriate role of priests and bishops and laity. The temporal sphere belongs to the laity. We have to stop needing to be told what to think about politics and culture and art by clerics. It isn't their job. It's ours.
Perhaps the Vatican's change in tone in this matter was to withhold using the Pope's blessing to get the People of God to embrace this film. It isn't a good movie because the Pope says so. It just is.