Pope John Paul II: Staunch defender of the dignity of women By Colleen Carroll Campbell

In 10 Colleen Carroll Campbell on 2012/01/07 at 12:00 AM

How do you summarize the legacy of a towering figure like Pope John Paul II, a man whose charismatic leadership precipitated the collapse of communism, thawed centuries of hostility between the Catholic Church and other religions and led him to log enough miles during his 26-year pontificate to circumnavigate the globe 30 times? Summarizing the late pope’s influence on my own life is only slightly less daunting, given that when he died in 2005, John Paul was the only pope I had ever known.

Like most Catholics of my generation, I grew up seeing John Paul as a sort of permanent fixture on the world stage. He seemed to be everywhere: boldly defending religious freedom in the heart of communist Poland, generously forgiving his would-be assassin in that bleak Roman prison cell, jovially greeting the pulsing throngs of teens and young adults who cheered him at World Youth Day gatherings from Denver to Manila. His dramatic witness to the Gospel impressed me from afar, but it was only after I saw that witness in person that I began to take a closer look at the man and his message.

Read more:http://www.colleen-campbell.com/Misc_Columns/110430OnFaithJohnPaul.htm

Colleen Carroll Campbell is a St. Louis-based author, former presidential speechwriter and television and radio host of “Faith & Culture” on EWTN. Her website is www.colleen-campbell.com.


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