It is, when you think about it, an extraordinarily daring claim to declare a saint. To be convincing it requires the creation of a lot of atmosphere and visible authority. Keeping the hubris and the humility in balance is perhaps the art of all external religion.
The Pope sits in the solitude of his ancient primacy on an elevated cathedra in front of St Peter’s. His supreme power is tempered by a sense of his personal loneliness. He looks down on the terraced ranks of the church, clergy, religious and laity strictly segregated in the hierarchical order that is the visible form of this part of the Body of Christ. Theology says all the parts are equal. But sacred theatre is not democratic – no one wants it to be, actors or audience.