A small item of controversy that hovered over “The Passion of the Christ” was the supposed comment of Pope John Paul II after viewing the movie. It is alleged that he said, "It is as it was!" Although that is a terrific line for the promotion of the movie (thereby inciting skeptics) there is solid evidence that he indeed made that statement. Why didn't he simply confirm what he said? Speculation has it that it was denied by those close to the Pope for two reasons: 1) Given the objections to the film by many Jewish leaders, they might take offense at his taking a favorable view of the film; 2) Mel Gibson's anti-Vatican II beliefs as a Tridentine Catholic might cause the Pope some embarrassment. To that, I would add a third point as to why the Pope's cohorts should have wanted to draw back his comment: Because it's rather silly! How could he know that "It is as it was," unless he was there?"