Apparently a joke around Rome after the new Pope Francis sluffed off the gilded costumes of his predecessors was that if all high-ranking clerics began to shuck their pricey garb, fine liturgical lace would be found at bargain prices on eBay.
Now, you have to wonder if the real estate market will tank, too. Francis himself forewent the lavish papal apartment for simpler lodgings.
Then he called the German prelate dubbed the Bishop of Bling on the carpet for the $43 million renovation of his residence, including $26,000 for heated stones to make outdoor walking more comfortable. This week Atlanta Archbishop Wilton Gregory has apologized "from my heart," for the $2.2 million mansion he built with church dollars in the city's toniest neighborhood, saying it might soon be on the market.
Luxury auto dealers watch out, Francis also traded in the upmarket popemobile for a Ford Focus.