Thursday, April 02, 2009
What were you doing four years ago?
Four years ago today, I was helping with a TEC retreat at Wahlert High School. During that year, I was very ambitious. I was associate pastor for one parish and I helped out in five others. It was a good time but very busy as well. I was asked to help with this retreat and I said yes before I really thought about the consequences. It would make more sense if the guy who was associate pastor for one parish. But I decided to do it. During one of the breaks, the priest leader (who I was helping) had us all go to the media room of Wahlert High School and he told us that Pope John Paul II was not expected to live much longer. He had put together a power point presentation on the life of JP II and led us in prayer. The Pope died shortly thereafter.
I've said this before and I think it's doubly true today. During his life, I didn't know his writing well. He was the pope for my growing up years but I had no real idea of the theology of the body or how he really carried on the reforms of the Vatican II or all the many encyclicals he wrote. But, for three years of my priesthood I prayed for John Paul, our Pope because that's who he was. A Pope for us all. A gift given by God to his church to lead through tough times. Four years ago, I was going the same thing I am doing today: joining with the chorus of voices chanting "Santo Subito!" True holiness is easily seen in the life and love of JPII.
JPII: We love you!