Unbeknownst to most people, Pope Benedict XVI paid a secret visit to the United States not long after he was elected. After meeting with the President and various other officials, the Pope went on a road tour to visit some of the churches in the area.
The Pope settled into his limousine and got under way. After he’d been on the road for a little while, he started chatting with his driver. They discussed world events, family, sports, and a host of other topics. Finally, though, the Pope worked up the nerve to ask a favor.
“You know,” he said. “For many years, drivers have taken me everywhere I go. It’s been a very long time since I had the pleasure of sitting behind the wheel myself. We seem to be in a fairly isolated area… would you mind terribly if I drove for a little while?”
The driver was torn. On the one hand, he could get in serious trouble for letting an unlicensed driver operate his limousine, but on the other hand, this was the POPE for crying out loud! After a moment, the driver agreed. He pulled over, got out, and allowed the Pope to take over.
The driver was nervous, but the Pope quickly put him at ease by handling the limousine perfectly. Soon, the driver was relaxed to the point where he began dozing off.
The Pope, on the other hand, was enjoying himself immensely. As they drove along, the Pope started pushing the limousine faster and faster! And it wasn’t long before they attracted the attention of a highway patrol officer. When the blue lights started flashing and the siren began to wail, the driver awoke with a start. Fighting off panic, he instructed the Pope to pull to the shoulder, roll down the window, and wait for the officer.
The Pope did as instructed, and the officer approached. He took one look inside the limousine, then turned around and headed back for his patrol car. The following radio conversation then took place.
Officer: Um… headquarters? I’ve got a situation here. I’ve just pulled over somebody pretty important for speeding. Please advise.
HQ: Officer, who is it that you’ve pulled over? Is it the mayor?
Officer: Negative, headquarters. Much more important than that.
HQ: What — you’ve pulled over the governor?
Officer: Negative. Way more important.
HQ: Is… Is it… the President?
Officer: Negative. This guy’s even more important than the President.
HQ: More important than the President??? Cut to the chase, officer. Who is it?
Officer: I’m not sure, but I think it must be God! He’s got the Pope for a chauffeur!