As the long-running FOX animated sitcom The Simpsons celebrates their double-decade anniversary, the show's main character is getting an endorsement from perhaps the unlikeliest of places: The Vatican.
The Vatican's newspaper L'Osservatore recently published a story praising the 20-year-old television program for accurately, if not humorously, reflecting the average American's "modern notions and confusion about religion and spirituality," the Catholic News Service reports.
One of the show's main character, Homer Simpson, reflects "the religious and spiritual confusion of our times," L'Osservatore published, but adds that despite Homer's occasional flub of the holy spirit's name, "the two know each other quite well."
The newspaper points out one instance in which Homer looked to the skies and recited, "I'm not normally a praying man, but if you're up there, save me Superman!"
The character's phrase has been often said to be one of Simpson's creator Matt Groening's favorite moments in the show's 20-year history. Homer has also occasionally referred to Jesus as "Jeebus" throughout several episodes.
Still, many airings of the program exhibit Homer and the rest of the Simpson family engaged in some sort of church activity -- at some point during the show, the family can be seen attending services by the Reverend Timothy Lovejoy at the First Church of Springfield, a branch of the fictitious "Presbylutheranism Church" derived from the Protestant Church.
Though the Simpson family (and many other characters seen throughout the show) may not identify directly with the Catholic faith, the program's scripts -- described as "philosophical and sometimes even theological" were enough to drive an endorsement from the Vatican publication.
The Simpsons airs Sunday evenings on FOX40.Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times