Conan O'Brien, Stephen Colbert & Whoopi Goldberg crack jokes at the Vatican

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14/06/2024
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For one morning, the universal language of the Vatican was laughter as comedians from all over the world met with Pope Francis.

For some, it was not their first time meeting the head of the Catholic Church. But what was different was the message he gave the group—one specifically meant for them.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG
It was nice to see him again and nice to see him in this environment with comics who very rarely get a lot of love. But him reminding all of us that humor is everything. It really is meaningful and meaningful to us as humans, meaningful to God. It's nice to get a little pat on the back.

More than 100 comedians filled the Apostolic Palace to participate in this intiative promoted by the Dicasteries for Culture and Education and for Communication.

Each greeted the Pope individually, some even getting him to crack a smile. And Pope Francis left them reflecting on the relationship between humor and faith.

STEPHEN COLBERT
I love this Pope for all his flaws. He's a human being.
And if he thinks comedy could be part of the life of the Church and your role as a good Catholic or a good Christian, I'll think about that. I don't know how to do it. Adding dignity or respectability to comedians never helps, so I'm not gonna take it too seriously. But it was an honor.

Pope Francis not only gave the group advice but also a physical reminder of the experience: a rosary, which at least one comedian already has a plan for.

CONAN O'BRIEN
It’s one of those once in a lifetime opportunities. And I did get a rosary bead from the Pope and so that’s a nice thing to have. I can bring that to my mom and that’s going to mean the world to her and then I can take it away from my mom and sell it on eBay…and then keep the cash for myself. So yeah, I’ve got this whole thing worked out.

As these comedians return to their shows and podcasts, they bring with them both the Pope's words and the memory of his all-too famous smile.

KG

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