‘I’m a good Catholic, I swear!’: Madonna asks Pope Francis to meet and discuss her ‘blasphemous’ behaviour

Singer’s 1989 ‘Like a Prayer’ music video was banned by the Vatican

Ellie Harrison
Thursday 05 May 2022 13:36 BST
Madonna performs 'Future' at Eurovision 2019

Madonna has extended an olive branch to Pope Francis after she was condemned for her “blasphemous” behaviour.

The singer is famous for her tensions with the Catholic Church. Her 1989 music video for the song “Like a Prayer” – featuring burning crosses and an erotic depiction of Jesus – was banned by the Vatican, with Italian Roman Catholic historian Roberto de Mattei saying at the time: “The video is a blasphemy and insult because it shows immorals inside a church.”

Pope John Paul II also encouraged fans to boycott Madonna in Italy and not attend her Blond Ambition tour. Read more about the making of the video here.

In a tweet on Thursday (5 May), Madonna tagged the head of the Catholic Church, writing: “Hello @Pontifex Francis – I’m a good Catholic. I Swear! I mean I don’t Swear!

“Its [sic] been a few decades since my last confession. Would it be possible to meet up one day to discuss some important matters?”

She added: “I’ve been excommunicated three times. It doesn’t seem fair. Sincerely Madonna.”

Madonna in the music video for ‘Like a Prayer’

Madonna also came under fire for staging a mock crucifixion during a concert in Rome in 2006, leading to Cardinal Ersilio Tonino, speaking with the approval of Pope Benedict XVI, saying: “This time the limits have really been pushed too far.

“This concert is a blasphemous challenge to the faith and a profanation of the cross. She should be excommunicated.”

Next month, Madonna will release a new retrospective album to celebrate 50 number one hits on the Billboard Dance Club. The tracklist will include Madonna’s hit numbers like “Vogue”, “Like a Prayer”, “Music” and “Hung Up”.

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