Thursday, February 24, 2005
THE SUFFERING POPE. An emergency tracheotomy today underscored the frailty of the 84-year old Pope John Paul II. I have literally grown up with John Paul; he was selected to lead the Catholic Church when I was a Freshman in College. But the image of that vigorous "Polish Pope" who snow skiied and played football has given way to one who had a stroke and who suffers from Parkinson's disease. No question--John Paul's health is severely compromised. This man (man of God) is clearly suffering, frail, and not far from his last days. All the more reason that he shoud retain his position as "servant of the servants of God." We have admired a bright and strong pontiff; let us salute a sickened and suffering servant. Perhaps he will show the world how a person of Christian faith is to suffer and die. Perhaps that, more than anything else at this time, is what we all need to see.