Monday, August 16, 2004

Pope--"I have reached the end of my pilgrimage"

From Belfast Telegraph:

"The Pope, who on Saturday - the first of his two days at Lourdes - appeared briefly to lose his balance while kneeling down at Bernadette's cave, made a rare reference to his state of health at the start of the Rosary prayer. 'I feel with emotion that I have reached the end of my pilgrimage,' he said, and was seen to shed tears.

The Vatican spokesman Joaquin Navarro-Valls talked down the significance of the sentence. 'The Pope is showing his emotion over this pilgrimage to Lourdes which he has been looking forward to for a long time.''

But many see the Pope's visit to Lourdes - only his second trip outside Italy this year - as a symbolic farewell on Earth to the Virgin Mary whose hand he believes saved his life when a Turkish would-be assassin shot him in May 1981."


  1. How poignant it will be if the world's final glimpse of the Holy Father is, for all the entourage and media and cheering crowds, that of a struggling, afflicted child of God, come to Lourdes for the same reason all pilgrims come -- to importune the Virgin for her help, and to express to her his love.

    Even kneeling in prayer is scarcely possible any longer for this giant among men, and yet he witnesses, saying "Help me," and "I must finish."

    Is it blasphemous to think that we witness a passion?

    John Heavrin

  2. The Pope's humilty and total dependence on God (which he
    is not ashamed to show the world) is a tremendous witness and example to those of us who strive to follow Jesus too. May God always be with him.


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