Jarod Kintz once said “Laughter is the sound of the soul dancing.” If this is true, my soul has been in an advanced state of frenetic gyration since around 11am this morning when I stumbled upon an article on The Guardian web page. If you want irony, I can guarantee that you will never do better than this. I will try to contain myself for these few moments, while I attempt to faithfully replicate the headline that first captured my attention. Here goes. “Pope Francis to mafia: Repent, or ‘end up in hell’.” The strapline: ‘Francis’s stance on organised crime in contrast with church’s perceived former reluctance to criticise mafia bosses.

Where the f**k do you begin with this? Well, you could begin with applying a modest amount of sanity, because in any sane world if a 77 year old man decided to put on a long white dress, hang an object representing a hideous form of state execution last practised some two thousand years ago around his neck, told people to offer up polite requests for help to the mother of a carpenter who died some 60 generations ago, and then declared himself to be ‘God’s voice on Earth’, it would be a fairly safe bet that the poor sh*t would be quickly visited by a representative from your local mental health services and quietly sectioned, there to spend the remainder of his days in a cosy but secure environment. However, in the world which we actually inhabit, this individual is not only tolerated but is actually listened to as being a ‘voice of reason’ by at least one billion people on the planet! Proof positive that billions of people are almost certainly nothing short of clinically insane.

So how is it, then, that this man has avoided spending long years in a soft cell? Well, because he just happens to be the head of an organisation that makes the criminal activities of the mafia seem almost attractive. If there is a criminal activity that has been thought up by mankind over the past two thousand years, the Roman Catholic Church has invariably participated in it, usually with zealous enthusiasm. Murder, rape, child abuse, theft, grievous bodily harm, fraud: the list is endless. And that is before we ever start talking about morality. In fact, look back over that period, and if there hasn’t been a crime that could not be placed at its church doors, I’d like to hear it. From burning down the library in Alexandria, to the Crusades, the Inquisition, thieving as much gold as it could from any country upon which it forced its theology (usually involving plenty of slaughter and the liberal spreading of a colourful array of sexually transmitted diseases), the Catholic Church has killed and maimed its way merrily through the centuries, becoming very, very,  very rich in the process.

You seriously have to question whether any God that had a semi-functioning brain would, or could, ever choose pretty much any of the unhinged psychopaths who claim, or have claimed, to be ‘God’s Vicar’. If so, you would have to question just how omniscient ‘He’ truly is. You see, if I were God, I would probably be thinking, ‘Well, I know that old tw*t’s going to cover up child abuse. I can see it already because I am, well, omniscient. So, I’ll choose this other guy instead. He really will get the job done.’ But, no. God decides He’s going to pick some f**ked up psycho who thinks it’s perfectly acceptable to cover up the fact that some of the church’s representatives are f**king up children’s lives. Oh, and then decides that this mind-warp is going to be made a ‘saint’. Who the f**k says God doesn’t have a sense of humour, albeit a very sick one? It seems to me that there are two alternatives here, and neither look good for the Catholic Church: either (a) God doesn’t exist, or (b) He just appoints sick f**ks because He really isn’t good in selecting managing directors. Yet still millions still follow this crazy sh*t. It is lunacy on steroids.

In a contest between the mafia and the Catholic Church over which is the most f**ked up, and frankly dangerous, organisation, I would say the Church wins hands down. By and large the mafia limit themselves to killing each other and those involved in other, usually rival, criminal activities. Okay, they don’t say no to raking a few euros a week from some businesses (largely in Italy), just to prevent some nasty ‘accident’ happening to their premises or whatever. The Catholic Church, on the other hand, has always had a much bigger business plan: murder and maim people into believing that if they don’t follow the crap being spouted, they will not only burn in hell for all eternity, but will also be ending up there very quickly, thanks to being burnt at the stake, tortured to death, or a myriad of other delightful deaths thought up by Head Office in Rome. No subtle ‘give us a bit of money to protect your business’ from this crowd: it’s a full-on ‘give us all your money, or we’ll f**k you up, kill you and steal it anyway.’ Nice.

That this current ‘saintly’ Pope makes statements about a few Sicilian gangsters winding up with fire licking at their balls for eternity (presumably because God has already told him that this fate is in store for them) really proves nothing more than either he has senile dementia, is a shameless fraud, or is just plain f**ked up beyond all recognition; or maybe all three. It really is time that this cabal of wanton shysters is wound up and notice served that sanity really is going to be restored imminently……for god’s sake!