Blessed John Paul II: All Eyes Look to Rome for the Beatification of Pope John Paul II
ordination to the Diaconate in Christ, graduate studies at the Institute which bears his name and my current work at the Doctoral level in his writings and their significant contribution to moral theology and theological anthropology.
His magisterium shapes the Third Millennium of the Church into which he led us - by the grace of God and through the intercession of Mary, to whom he devoted his service to the Lord and His Church. He openly attested in his prayer of consecration "totus tuus ego sum et omnia mea tua sunt, accipio te in mea omnia" that he relied on her motherly care and he reminded us all continually that we can as well. I made that prayer my own many years ago. John Paul II claimed it was her motherly intercession which obtained for him the grace - on that day of her feast as the Lady of Fatima - to survive an assassin's bullet. I have no doubt.
Yet, his Marian piety revealed something even more profoundly important about him. Like all great Saints, John Paul was so configured to the Lord Jesus Christ that his life revealed Him to others. He had "put on Christ", (Rom. 13:14) as the Apostle Paul proclaimed and could claim those words written by the same apostle to the Galatians as his own "I have been crucified with Christ; yet I live, no longer I, but Christ lives in me; insofar as I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God who has loved me and given himself up for me." (Galatians 2:20)
The highlight of my life was when my hand was embraced by this Saint on that crystal clear sunny day in Rome, and I encountered in those loving blue eyes the Jesus whom Pope John Paul II served. I would never be the same. In that encounter, a man who up till then had probably never been at a loss for words could not speak. I could only weep and fall to my knees. I knew then what the crowds will declare on May 1, 2011, this man was - and is - a Saint. He now calls us, through his life and death, to follow the same Way, the Way of the Redeemer whom he served with such beauty and devotion. Blessed John Paul II, Pray for Us.
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
Keywords: John Paul II, Blessed John Paul II, Canonization, Totus Tuus, Pope Benedict, Mary, Mother of God, Deacon Keith Fournier
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