Pope's friendships with women no argument against celibacy
Much more interesting than our dull election campaign is the 'revelation' that Pope John Paul II had a close friendship for more than 30 years with a married Polish academic by the name of Anna-Teresa Tymienecka. This story touches on sex and love and men and women. How does your average election campaign compare with that?
This story is in the news because the BBC's Edward Stourton went to the bother of going to Poland in order to access the papers of Tymienecka, a philosopher, including her private papers. Among her private papers are more than 300 letters to her from Pope John Paul II spanning the period from 1973 (before he became pope) until his death in 2005.
These letters formed the basis of a 'Panorama' documentary broadcast this week. The Pope was obviously very fond of her and she of him but no-one is suggesting that their friendship developed into a sexual relationship.