Bono Honors the Pope



Bono paid tribute to Pope John Paul II during U2's show in Anaheim, California last night (April 2).

Five songs into the Dublin band's sold out concert at the Anaheim Pond the singer began speaking about the head of the Catholic Church, who passed away Saturday evening at the age of 84.

"I met the Holy Father and I was so taken by this showman, even if I didn't agree with everything he said," the singer, whose father was Roman Catholic, said to the crowd as the band began playing the intro to new song 'Miracle Drug'.

Bono carried on speaking about a time six years ago, when he met the church head and gave the Pope his trademark sunglasses.

"I said 'Holy father, do you want a pair of fly shades?' and he said 'yes' and he put them on and he made a face kind of like this."

After scrunching his face to resemble Pope John Paul II, Bono showed the crowd he still carries with him a token of their meeting.

"He reached out and gave me this sort of crooked cross. It was designed by Michelangelo. They're my rosaries and I wear them around my neck, and I take them off and put them in my pocket during a rock show, you understand [why]."

The band then launched into the full version of 'Miracle Drug' which Bono dedicated to "anyone who is sick." Before the U2's next song, recent single 'Sometimes You Can't Make it On Your Own', Bono called out the name of the Pope - "John Paul" to the crowd and described him as "an Italian who knew the right person to get into heaven."

U2 played to the packed house for two hours including 'Mysterious Ways', 'The Fly' and 'Electric Company', which he said the band had not played for years. On the final song of the night, '40', Bono took out the rosary given to him by the Pope and hung it on his microphone stand.

U2's 'Vertigo' tour continues in Los Angeles on Tuesday (April 5).



I myself, at the age of 16, am a devote Roman Catholic who has been raised in the church and after hearing this, makes me listen to any U2 song in a whole different way. It gives me so much more respect for the band

John Paul II was from Poland


I suspect that Bono is very aware that the Holy Father was Polish... who could miss that? So I have two theories:

1) it was a stupid slip of the tongue (we all make those sometimes)

or 2) it's some kind of inside joke, that possibly only Bono gets...

I'm inclined towards the latter. :)

I don't belive that Bono said "an Italian" about John Paul II. If he said so... What will he say in Poland , in Chorzow where U2 plays concert???shame, shame, shame

Hi everyone!
I also can not belive this! It is so shame, Bono! Pope John Paul II was born in Wadowice, Poland, in 1920 as Karol Jozef Wojtyla. We are waiting for some more words from you, Bono.
................................................................................... "angel has gone home to be among other angels." We will miss him! ...

Maybe he meant Italian by residency?

Oh c'mon, lighten up. I think they are both (the Pope and Bono) great men, who have had a profound influence on the world in very different but very positive ways. The death of Pope John Paul reminds us that we are all immortal. Live life to its fullest and try to do good in the world.
That said, I agree with Alexander's post above. Bono is only human and makes mistakes. OF COURSE he knows the Pope is from Poland. Lighten up on him! Don't take it so seriously and make an issue. That will only overshadow the sincerity of what Bono had to say of the Pope.

OOOPs, that should read "we are all mortal"!!
See, we all make mistakes.
Enjoy life!

I am polish and do not see it so dramatic that Bono said "italian".We are used to hear that forigners not always know where Poland is. But Bono knows for sure that the John Paul II was from Poland. I belive also that Bono and the Band will pay tribute to John Paul II in Chorzow on the 5th of July one more time.
Anyway, his tribute is one more reason to stay with U2 another 20 years. Thanx Bono!

Italian = Roman catholic from Irish christians standpoint.

I was at that show, is hard to explain what i felt when this happened I felt something inside me, tears were trying to come out of my eyes, I couldnt swallow, was very touching, when Bono said those words!'s hard to explain!

Bono most certainly knows that the late Pope John Paul the Great was Polish.. However, he was also known as the Bishop of Rome.. This being the head Rome's Vatican.. simply put in one word.. Italian.

Bono's respect for the Pope cannot be questioned whether it was a mistake or otherwise

the pope has an unexplainfull meaning 2 me if anything was miss understood i pardon, the pope is a cityzen of the world ,but still polish at heart

have a good day thanks for your support.

you say potato i say tomato. we are all children of the same God.

He said Italian because the Pope lived in Italy since the start of his papacy. Also people in Italy considered him to be Italian, like a respect thing. Also the Pope is the Bishop of Rome. That is why he refered to him as an Italian. Bono is a worldly man, he knows he was from Poland.

i appreciate Bono and admire him more and more as a U2 fan of over 20 years I consider Bono to be the most sincere person ever === I have heard Bonos speech of the Pope and it makes me respect him so much more=== Thank you Bono!!!!

Just to let you all know. From what I've read (I wasn't there), Bono seemed pretty much aware of the fact that John Paul II was Polish, when he spoke about him at the concert in Poland. He even seemed to know that the Pope was born not far from the town where the concert took place.

Are they any photos from this show?

Leave a comment

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Jonathan published on April 3, 2005 11:16 PM.

Heartfelt Ambition: Challenging Personal Themes and Enduring Energy Keep U2 More Relevant Than Ever was the previous entry in this blog.

Brad Pitt, Bono Among Celebs on New PSA is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Monthly Archives


OpenID accepted here Learn more about OpenID