Monday, April 04, 2005

A Great Legacy

There is much being said about the legacy of Pope John Paul II. He was, undeniably, a great man whose faith was unquestionable, whose words reached out beyond just Catholics and inspired followers of many faiths.

Here Helen Prejan (the nun represented in Dead Man Walking) reflects on the Pope’s commitment to life and his calls to abolish the death penalty.

And here, columnist Charles Krauthammer praises the Pope’s role in defeating communism in Europe.

While not everyone agreed with everything the Pope stood for, we can all admire his unyielding faith that mankind is ultimately good and that we posses the ability to facedown and triumph over any evil.

Speaking of the Holocaust in 1994, John Paul II said:

We have a commitment, the only one perhaps that can give meaning to every tear shed by man because of man and to justify it.

We have seen with our eyes, we were and are witnesses of violence and hatred, which are kindled in the world all too often and consume it.

We have seen and we see peace derided, brotherhood mocked, harmony ignored, mercy scorned.

The evils of the world did not die with Pope John Paul II. And neither should our commitment to confront them. As we consider the legacy of this great man, let us also reflect on how best to keep his spirit alive. There is a genocide in Sudan. There is unforgivable oppression in the Middle East. There is crushing poverty right here at home. And there is great cause for us to confront them all.


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