I watched another wonderful DVD today: Witness to Hope: the Life of Karol Wojtyla – Pope John Paul II. It is based on the book by George Weigel.
It was a beautiful, moving, and very well-done film. I learned a lot about the world our late Holy Father came from, and how it shaped him and his work. I wish I could put myself into God’s hands the way Pope John Paul II did. He was truly a remarkable man, even when he was still Karol Wojtyla, before he became Pope.
He was Pope from the time I was 2 years old, until I was 28. But he was never much a part of my life. I never paid him or the papacy much mind. He was just some old man in Rome. He didn’t really affect us or our lives (so I thought). When he died and his story was everywhere on TV and in the media, I finally began to learn who he was and what he did. And I was so full of regret! How could I have been so indifferent and, at times, so hostile?
When Pope Benedict XVI was elected, I started to slip back to my old ways. I still wasn’t much of a Catholic at the time. But I have since vowed that I was going to do my best to get to know our Holy Father and follow his activities and ideas. I haven’t regretted that one bit–I love him so much! He fills a special place in my heart, sort of a grandfatherly place, since I never got to know either of my biological grandfathers.
I have begun to feel that way for Pope John Paul as well… and really for all the previous popes. I know that they are still watching over their children from Heaven, along with my biological family and other loved ones who have gone before me. That makes me very glad! :)