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Apr. 6, 2005
POPE JOHN PAUL II AND THE CULTURE OF LIFE 
On April 3, Easter Sunday, The Dallas Morning News prominently featured an editorial, not on the editorial page but instead on Page 2, about Pope John Paul II. The final paragraph says this; “His two most important encyclicals—1993's Veritatis Splendor (The Splendor of Truth), and 1995’s Evangelium Vitae (The Gospel of Life)—spoke to the deepest moral concerns that bloody and chaotic century left to the world of the 21st. In those epistles to the church and the world, the pope warned that the future of humanity free from tyranny and mass murder depended upon both refuting moral relativism and defending the nonnegotiable right to life of all human beings.

“The world loved him but, for the most part, did not listen. Only time will tell whether this is his tragic failure or our own.”

For a major secular newspaper to admit that our collective refusal to hear the message of this great Pope is a failure is an admission that his message as the Vicar of Christ on Earth is right and true. We can say unequivocally that we already know where the failure lies, and it is with us.

Just as Jesus’ message of reformation and repentance was largely ignored in His time, the relatively few who embraced it, led by a man named Peter and inspired by the Holy Spirit, built the great religious tradition of Christianity. Pope John Paul II, because he preached what Jesus taught, and because he unflinchingly upheld the highest moral principles, calling us to a life of holiness, he was frequently criticized as “intolerant” of those who choose the crooked path. On the contrary, Pope John Paul II was full of love for all of us who struggle through this life as fallen creatures seeking God. Like Jesus, the pope was called to remind us that we must love one another while we must avoid tolerance of sin. Like Jesus, the pope called us to respect all human beings from conception until natural death, to repentance of our sins, and to the reformation of our lives.

John Paul II lives. He lives in Heaven where he must truly be a saint. He lives in his writings and speeches and in his recorded visits to 129 countries and his homilies to millions and millions of people. His mission of bringing Christ to us all will continue as long as his works survive, and we hope and pray that will be forever.

He called all of us to be better than we are. Let us remember what St. Paul told the Philippians: “Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Keep on doing what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me. Then the God of peace will be with you.”

Let us think about what we have learned and received and heard from Pope John Paul II and never waver in pursuit of a culture of life. Let us offer that gift to John Paul the Great who gave us so very much.

Requiescat in Pace.


Republican National
Coalition for Life


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