The Pope And His Mother

Pope Benedict XI was raised to the papal chair in 1303. His mother was still living, and in Rome, where she, a poor widow, supported herself by washlog. Seeing how many persons flocked to offer their congratulations to the newly elected pontiff, his mother must needs do the same. So she bought a grand dress and repaired to the papal palace with all the airs of a great lady. When she presented herself before the pope, he stepped back, saying: "That is not my mother. My mother is not a lady of rank; she is a poor washerwoman." She, consequently, was obliged to withdraw, and resume the simple, shabby clothes that became her humble station. When she again entered the pope's presence, he welcomed her most cordially, and provided for her during the remainder of her days. He was not ashamed of the low estate of his parents. And yet how often we meet with persons of humble rank who are ashamed of their parents because they are poor. Who can do otherwise- than despise such arrogant and ungrateful children? From Anecdotes and Examples Illustrating the Catholic Catechism

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