More on Abp. Sheen & Humor at Vatican II: Cardinal Ottaviani, Chicks, Bars, etc.
Under the two great tiers which seated about 1,200 bishops on each side of the basilica, there were two coffee bars. It was not long before the Fathers found names for them. One was called Bar-Jona, which was part of the Hebrew name for St. Peter.
Referring to the camaraderie that prevailed among the bishops, this rhyme was composed by a bishop from Australia's great desert at the beginning of the Council:
Or even buddies, the term in the States.
Secure in the knowledge
We belong to the College,
With the Pope we're to have tête-à-têtes.
Cardinal Suenens, when he addressed the Council on the subject of women, inspired this humorous reflection:
I'm weary of this Segregatio.
The Patres are churls,
Let's bring in the girls,
Though there's sure to be some admiratio.
The theologians and other experts or Periti were not allowed to mingle among the Council members. Several of them were conspicuous for slipping into the restricted area, which prompted a jingle ascribed to Cardinal Felice reminding them to remain in their proper places:
To an expert who's peripatetic.
He thinks a Peritus
Should remain in his situs
Unless he's rather dyspeptic.
With regard to the sacredness of life and the discussion on the limitation of birth, these lines appeared:
May be used even though you're not ill.
It gives the ability
To banish fertility
But I can't really think it's God's Will.
Finally, when the time came for the bishops to leave at the closing of the Council, this last rhyme came from Bishop John P. O'Loughlin, who had so delighted the Council Fathers:
We can proudly display our diploma
At the Council's finale
We say "buon natale"
And "goodbye" to Bar-Jona's aroma.