THERE IS SO MUCH THAT IS GOOD
ABOUT THIS MAN THE WORLD KNOWS AS
POPE JOHN PAUL ll.
SO MUCH THAT NEEDS TO BE TOLD ABOUT HIS
TIRELESS EFFORTS FOR HUMANITY
THERE IS MUCH THE WORLD DESERVES TO KNOW ABOUT HIM.
FOR MYSELF, I SEE HIM AS ONE OF THOSE 'GREAT ONES' WHO
RETURN TO EARTH, TIME AND TIME AGAIN, COMING OUT OF HIGH
HEAVENS EACH TIME, TO PARTICIPATE IN THE GREAT WORK OF
LEADING GOD'S PEOPLE FORWARD TO
'THE CHRIST CONSCIOUSNESS' THAT IS AWAKENING ON EARTH
AT THIS TIME.
THERE MAY COME A TIME, ON THIS WEBSITE, TO SPEAK OF CERTAIN
HISTORY REGARDING THE CATHOLIC CHURCH....THE GOOD ITS HAS
DONE WORLDWIDE, WHILE LOOKING AT ITS 'DESTRUCTIVE BAGGAGE' OF
OF THE PAST WHICH IS 'KARMIC DEBT' THAT EVERY
CHURCH ORGANIZATION THAT SEEKS POWER AND CONTROL
MUST DEAL WITH IN THE PRESENT TIME WHEN 'GREATER LIFE' HAS
DECREED THAT THE 'OLD THINKING' MUST GIVE WAY TO A NEW
SPIRITUAL APPROACH IN ORDER FOR MANKIND TO MOVE FORWARD ON THE
INCOMING WAVE OF THE FUTURE.
I LIKED THIS GREAT SOUL, POPE JOHN PAUL, THE SECOND, WHO (I SUSPECT) EMBODIED TO BEGIN THE PROCESS OF HEALING THE TERRIBLE WOUNDS INFLICTED ON MILLIONS OF PEOPLE BY THIS CHURCH IN EARLIER TIMES....AND TO START THE REBUILDING PROCESS OF BRINGING PEOPLE TOGETHER RATHER THAN ACTING AS A POLARIZING ORGANIZATION THAT SEPARATES THEM.
POPE JOHN PAUL II MADE SOME PROGRESS IN THE PAST THIRTY YEARS. HOWEVER THERE IS ONLY SO MUCH ANY ONE MAN CAN DO GIVEN POLITICAL BOUNDARIES OF CHURCH AND SOCIETY AS IT EXISTS IN HIS TIME.
THE SPIRITUAL FUTURE OF MILLIONS OF PEOPLE DEPENDS ON THE NEXT POPE...IN THESE 'CHANGING TIMES' MUCH IS COMING TO A HEAD. WHICH DIRECTION WILL 'THE POLITICAL CHURCH' TAKE?
BUT RETURNING TO OUR SUBJECT.....AS HAS BEEN THE CASE IN THE PAST, CERTAIN GREAT SOULS VOLUNTEER TO COME BACK TO EARTH TO HELP AT TIMES OF MAJOR TURNING POINTS IN THE HISTORY OF MANKIND....THEY COME TO THROW OPEN DOORS AND AWAKEN MINDS.......
I BELIEVE POPE JOHN PAUL II IS ONE OF THESE.
THERE WILL BE MANY WHO WILL SPEAK AGAINST HIM.
THE DETRACTORS OF GOOD....THE PURVEYORS OF HATE AND
DISSENSION.... THEY HAVE ALREADY BEGUN THE CAMPAIGN TO
THROW DOUBT UPON HIS GOODNESS AND GODNESS....ALREADY
SPEAKING AGAINST HIM....CRITIQUING HIS WORKS...
EVEN BEFORE THE FUNERAL CEREMONIES ARE COMPLETED.
IT IS FOR US TO REMEMBER, THAT IN ANOTHER TIME 'THIS SAME
MIND-SET' OF HATE ALONG WITH THOSE OF TWO THOUSAND
YEARS AGO WHO SIMPLY COULD NOT
INCLUDING THOSE WHO HAD A PERSONAL OR POLITICAL AX TO
'THEY' ONCE CRUCIFIED A CHRIST....
AND 'THEY', IN THEIR MANY GUISES AND DISGUISES, HAVE BEEN
DENIGRATING AND TRYING TO DESTROY
'THE CHRISTIC SPIRITUALITY OF JESUS'
EVER SINCE, WHEREVER THEY FIND IT. AND ALL THAT STANDS
BETWEEN 'THEM' AND GODNESS ON THIS PLANET,
IS EACH ONE OF US
WHO HAVE 'BELIEVED'.
WE MUST NEVER FORGET THAT.
LET ME SAY UP FRONT, I AM NOT A MEMBER OF THE CATHOLIC ORGANIZATION.
NEVER-THE-LESS, IT GIVES ME GREAT PLEASURE TO GATHER HERE SOME OF THE MANY WONDERFUL TRIBUTES BEING WRITTEN, PRAISING A MAN DEDICATED TO SPIRITUAL PRINCIPLES.
I AM CHOOSING EXCERPTS FROM EDITORIALS AND NEWS ARTICLES THAT ARE PARTICULARLY FINE....THANKING THE WRITERS IN ADVANCE FOR ALLOWING ME TO SHARE THEIR THOUGHTS.
I ESPECIALLY LIKED THESE WORDS OF MATT MAY....
SO THIS IS WHERE I WILL BEGIN .
From Matt May, a freelance writer in the metro-Detroit area come these thoughts.
He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org'
Pope John Paul II has come to the end of a remarkable journey on this Earth,
a journey that took him and his faith all over the world, reinvigorated faith in
the young, evaded and defied one murdering and horrible force, and helped bring
down another of the most evil forces ever unleashed on this planet. To call him
one of the greatest men to ever stride this ground is no exaggeration.
Not being a Catholic - although a Christian - it is not for this page to comment on the pope's influence on the faithful of the Catholic Church, yet it is obvious that his leadership inspired millions of Catholics around the world. His trips overseas drew the young to his side and uplifted them. His vision of a strong and progressive Church in places like Latin America and Africa were noble indeed, and it is hoped that the College of Cardinals will name a worthy successor, though one does not envy the man who must step into John Paul II's shoes.
In this corner of the world, Pope John Paul II will always be remembered as one arm of the golden triangle - along with Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher - who together and separately tore down the Iron Curtain. One is struck especially by the similarities between the late president and the pope. As a young man in Poland, the pope participated actively in the theater, and he brought a certain sense of the actor's touch to the papacy. With a knowing smile, a glance, or a glint of the eyes, Pope John Paul II was able to convey the same sort of intimacy Reagan was able to create through the small screen. The pope seemed accessible to all, not some remote, dark figure of mystery that the Vatican can sometimes convey on purpose or not. This was a man who clearly enjoyed life and was not shy about expressing his joy.
Like Reagan, he probably never fully recovered from the attempt on his life. It has been said that not a day has gone by since that dark day in the square that has been spent free of pain. The pope's moral courage is equaled by his physical courage, a courage that literally he displayed until the final hours of his life when he appeared for the final time for us at his window. Unlike our beloved fallen president, the pope's decline has been all too public, yet he was able to maintain his dignity and carry on in spite of his difficulties. It was, perhaps, the grandest performance of his life.
At the core of the man - even beyond faith and devotion to the work of his church - was an abiding belief in the natural yearning of every human being, the yearning to be free. When he returned to his native Poland for the first time as the head of the Catholic Church and threw his solidarity behind the labor movement there, he signaled to the world that the pervasive disease of Communism now had a most powerful enemy. His support gave hope to those under the control of dictators and despots, and moved the world.
Godspeed, Karol Wojtyla
April 3, 2005
From Chris Weinkopf editorial page editor, of the Daily News'
comes this perceptive article .
His Beliefs Never Shifted
Pope was Catholics' Holy Father, not politician
Among the mostly secular press and punditry, there seems to be a consensus about Pope John Paul II: He was a man of admirable courage and principle - and his successor should be precisely the opposite.
We read story after story praising the Holy Father for his resoluteness, for his refusal to yield to fear. These stories run side by side with others insisting that the next pope will need to be less resolute, and yield to the spirit of the times, for fear that modernity will render the Catholic Church obsolete.
For Catholics like myself, the contradiction is bemusing.
For starters, we Catholics believe that the church is guided by the Holy Spirit in matters of faith and morality. Repudiating existing doctrine thus requires changing the essence of God, and no man, not even the pope, is going to do that.
Then there's the experience of the past two weeks, in which we have witnessed the nation and the world - Catholics and non-Catholics alike - celebrate and revere a man whose critics long mocked as a stubborn, if not cruel, walking anachronism. Remarkably, a Polish priest who steadfastly defended manifestly unpopular opinions has became one of the nation's most popular heroes.
Perhaps the secular commentators have it all wrong.
Perhaps Pope John Paul II captured the hearts and affection of the world not despite his fidelity to Christian orthodoxy, but because of it.
The polls, the experts tell us, demand change. Change those controversial Catholic teachings on sex, marriage and life. Change the ordination process to include women.
But faith, morality and the church have never been about tacking to the shifting winds of popular opinion. The church's thinking on sex and marriage is rooted in Scripture and 2,000 years of tradition. The male priesthood, Catholics believe, was established by none other than Jesus himself.
Those who disagree are always at liberty to reject these practices as well as the faith that informs them. But demanding that a pope "revise" church teaching is asking that he defy what the faith holds to be the will of God. And for what, a shift in public sentiment?
Morality is a tough sell. One suspects that had Moses, upon descending from Mount Sinai, put the Decalogue up to a vote, we would today have fewer than all Ten Commandments. It was a mob that put Christ to death. And it was a small band of apostles who carried Christianity into a brutally unreceptive world.
Truth and what's right aren't always reflected in the numbers.
In the era of the sexual revolution, traditional Christian doctrines on the sacredness of sex and marriage are sure to arouse dissent. But as the head of a church that has outlasted centuries-long heresies, John Paul wasn't going to flinch in the face of a few decades' social upheaval.
Pope John Paul II was no politician, willing to tell the public whatever it wanted to hear. He was a warrior for souls.
Tenderly and compassionately, he spoke out against any vice or injustice, whether socially acceptable or not, that could obstruct the salvation of any living person. All the while, he accorded those who disagreed with him the utmost in dignity and respect.
Parents can relate to the experience of gently urging their children to do better, and meeting massive, angry resistance along the way. But eventually, if applied lovingly, the lesson takes hold, and the child is grateful for the strength and wisdom of the parent's guidance. So it was for our Holy Father, who, for all his ostensibly ancient ways, was admired most of all by the world's youth.
In an age of convenience and relativism, there's no shortage of institutions, personalities, even churches willing to compromise their deepest-held principles in the interest of short-term gain. John Paul II wasn't one of them.
The pope's dogged determination to do what is right is what gave him his moral authority. It's what made him fascinating and relevant to a busy world that spent more than a week mourning him. It's why the pollsters and armchair theologians who call him anachronistic can't simply ignore him altogether.
Ultimately and paradoxically, it was being so "unpopular" that made Pope John Paul II so beloved.
We can write to Chris at email@example.com.
Pope receiving Medal of Freedom from President George W. Bush
Facts about his Life and Times.
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Lois J Crawford