Beatification of Pope John Paul II

In the January 13, Thursday edition of the Tribune, I caught a short article on the beatification of Pope John Paul II.  Pope Benedict XVI, will approve the case of beatification according to sources in the Vatican.  The intercession of prayers to John Paul miraculously cured a nun with Parkinson's disease which means only one more miracle is needed for John Paul to become a saint.
May I offer up my story?  Pope John Paul II was my pope.  He was there when I first became a convert and it's nothing short of a miracle that I am where I am today.  No pope in modern times accomplished what John Paul did.  He traveled tirelessly, even in poor health.  He reached out to the masses more then some parish priests take the time to do.  He truly was the "people's pope."
As I began my journey in faith, I was taken by this man who seemed to understand that he couldn't stay in Italy and minister to his flock.  He had to get out there, even surviving an assassination attempt and then forgiving his would be murderer.  I still remember watching him on TV, waving to the people, blessing them with his eyes filled with Christ's love.  I thought to myself, "He gets it."
In a conversation with an old friend who became Christian around the time of my own conversion, we both broke out laughing.  We knew each other for years and we did crazy things together in our youth.  Now here we both were, living completely different lifestyles and a 360 degree change in attitude.  You have no idea how hilarious this is!  Neither one of us expected to be where we are now, but God had other plans for both us.
I'm glad the Church has decided to move along when it comes to beatification and sainthood.  Our church has a rich history of saints, but acknowledging those that lived during our time is what we need.  We all need to know that we are only two miracles away from sainthood.
I gotta go - I have to get busy on my second one!

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