Sunday, March 27, 2005

Sadness for the Pope?

According to reports, Pope John Paul II attempted, but failed to read aloud a blessing to the assembled faithful at St. Peter's Square. On one level, we share with sadness the Pope's own evident frustration at his inability to do what he does best -- communicate. On another level, however, we should rejoice in sharing the world with this man, for despite his inability to speak, he is still communicating as forcefully for the good as ever. While we in the United States have been deluged with the sad story of Terry Schiavo and the evil of those who would choose death for her over life, Pope John Paul II continues his own testimony as to the value of human life, even life that is ravaged by disease and disability. No one can dispute the iron will that still drives the frail body.

If it is sadness that we feel, it is the sadness of impending loss (whenever that day inevitably comes). However, it is my hope that we should be more like Mary Magdalene, who weeping for the death of the Messiah, was asked by the Messiah himself why she was crying -- leading to revelation. We shall find that Pope John Paul II will have himself gone on to his rightful honor in a happier place and that he will have left this world a better place for those of us who remain.

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