On the Pontificate of Pope John Paul II

  • All-Embracing Man of Action for a New Era of Papacy, by Robert McFadden. New York Times April 3, 2005:

    The man who would call himself John Paul II was not the traditional papal figure, compassionate and loving but ascetic and remote behind the high walls and the elaborate ceremony of the Vatican. Here was a different kind of pope: complex, schooled in confrontation, theologically intransigent but deftly politic, full of wit and daring, energy and physically expressive love.

    More than outgoing, he was all-embracing - a bear-hugging, larger-than-life man of action who had climbed mountains, performed in plays, written books and seen war, and he was determined from the start to make the world his parish and go out and minister to its troubles and see to its spiritual needs.

  • A Man for All Seasons: The very modern papacy of John Paul II Wall Street Journal:

    . . . this was a man eminently comfortable with modernity--even while he refused to accept modernity's most shallow assumptions. Just as he offered his first public words as pope in Italian to make himself understood by those below his balcony, he held that ultimate truths about man and his relationship with his Creator are never outdated, however much they require constant expression in new languages and new circumstances.

  • "A magnificent pope who presided over a controversial pontificate", by John Allen Jr. National Catholic Reporter April 2004.

  • The Last Anti-modern Pope, by Sandro Magister; interview with Giovanni Maria Vian: "His was a Church of saints set against the powers of evil: first Soviet communism, then the civilization of money, sex, and the liberty that enslaves."