Archbishop Fulton Sheen


[I am not sure what title he should have since I have also seen “Venerated” attached to his name, so I went with the title I have seen most frequently.]

My wife and I were watching the Showtime program THE TUDORS last week and Peter O’Toole played the part of Pope Paul III.  In an episode where O’Toole had a lot of lines including the following

  • “The King of England has been carried far from the shore, but he does not realize it yet.  He does not ask for God’s help; he does not ask for our help.  He thinks he can swim alone- but very soon, he will realize he is not swimming, but drowning.”

and another that I can’t find but ends with him saying

“…and before God!”

My wife and I were discussing afterwards how you just don’t find that kind of presence on film much anymore. You just don’t. I don’t know if there are not actors able to deliver such lines in such a way anymore, or if directors don’t think such performances realistic anymore.

I do admit O’Toole threw me out of the scene a few times, but it was the sheer brilliance of his delivery that distracted me, not any lack.

Any film that takes place in modern times couldn’t really be called realistic with lines delivered with such delicious authority. We are just so ho-hum and actually whatever omg blah, blah, blah.

So I was reminded of O’Toole’s performance the other evening when I came across, on YouTube, Fulton Sheen’s Life is Worth Living from way back in the 50’s and 60’s.

Man, what an orator! What a performer even! When he gets serious I get goosebumps.


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