The leaders of the Roman Catholic Church and sedevacantist breakaway church shook hands for the first time ever at the Kansas-Missouri border, prior to talks to possibly one day end the separation between the two churches.
The meeting, which comes after twenty-eight years since Pope Michael was elected pope by 6 laymen in 1990, embodied a strikingly different tone as the leaders discussed prospects for peace, and perhaps reach reunification.
Recent weeks have seen a distinct softening in tone from sedevacantist church, which has been for all intents and purposes ignored by the Roman Catholic Church. And most of the world, too. An opening of bilateral relations was the primary topic at hand. The popes were seen smiling and walking together, ahead of talks during which Pope Francis hoped to convince Michael “to adopt a joint statement seeking reconciliation and unification, and maybe even some change a doctrine or two, who knows?” according to one of Pope Francis’ advisors.
“We wish to accompany Pope Francis and his 1 billion-some odd followers into Christ’s one, true flock,” Pope Michael announced to the gathered media. He and Pope Francis shared a quick laugh, after which Michael said: “No no, just kidding, folks. That was a joke.”
“We will proceed with pastoral accompaniment, gently guiding them back into the fold, asking faithful Catholics worldwide to recall my own words from several years ago, ‘Hey, who am I to judge?'” Pope Francis added. “We no longer desire that Vatican In Exile remain in exile.”
After the handshake, they headed towards Topeka where Pope Michael still lives with his mother, to enjoy a nice home-cooked meal.