27 April 2014 has seen the canonization of two great Popes: John XXIII and John Paul II. It is now time to briefly reflect on the impact that these two “Messengers of Love, Peace and Hope” have for all Catholics and, indeed, for the whole world.
These Popes lived in very different times and were very different in many ways, but they were also similar in their being indefatigable promoters of love, peace and hope.
John XXIII exercised his pastoral ministry during the “Cold War” between the Soviet Bloc and the Western countries – a time characterized by the constant danger that the “Cold War” might become “hot” to the point of leading to a nuclear conflagration that would have wiped out the entire mankind. In a world gripped by fear, prejudices, and pessimism, John XXIII sowed the seeds of mutual trust and respect, cooperation, optimism and hope in better days.
John XXIII also took the bold step of convoking the Second Vatican Council, which was meant to bring about a “New Springtime” in the life of the Church.
Pope John Paul II was, likewise, a great “Messenger of Hope, Trust and Love” to the Church and the entire world. He made Vatican II bear immense fruit in so many areas, promoting openness, dialogue, cooperation, care for the poor and the weak. He galvanized the young people through the World Youth Days, and injected in the Church a “global dynamism” in preparation for and the holding of the “Great Jubilee” of the Year 2000, which ushered in the Third Millennium.
The MDL Editorial Team