Saturday, August 3, 2013

Devotion for today: “We Want God”...John Paul II's gift to Poland

Luke 11:9-13: And I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.  What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion?  If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

“As a bishop does in the sacrament of Confirmation so do I today extend my hands in that apostolic gesture over all who are gathered here today, my compatriots. And so I speak for Christ himself: ‘Receive the Holy Spirit!’
I speak too for St. Paul: ‘Do not quench the Spirit!’
I speak again for St. Paul: ‘Do not grieve the Spirit of God!’ Blessed John Paul II, June 10, 1979, Poland

While I was in Poland, I was awed at the people's love for John Paul II. It wasn't the kind of national pride in a "home town boy makes good" nature. It was pure love, thankful love, emotional love. I have done some research to try and understand this feeling, and I think I have found something that "says it all".

I would like you to take time today to read this article which appeared in the Wall Street Journal on April 7, 2005. Written by Peggy Noonan, it is a tribute to John Paul II which she wrote the day before his funeral.  In this article, Ms. Noonan beautifully captures what John Paul II accomplished in his 1979 trip to Poland: how even the powerful force of communism could not stand up to the faith of the people, now aroused by this charismatic leader.  Read, and learn. Ponder the end statements, and pray for our country, that we too may be roused out of our slumber to stand up for our religious liberty. Let us learn from the example of the Polish people, and proclaim as loudly as we can, "WE WANT GOD"!

Blessed John Paul II, pray for us!!

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