This beatification will move the world
Fr. IRENEUSZ SKUBIŚ
It is only a month to the beatification of John Paul II in Rome on 1 May 2011. We all are looking forward to this day. The Polish Church would like to experience it as beautiful as possible. Where should we experience it? Of course, if possible we should go to Rome, to St Peter’s Square where the Holy Father Benedict XVI will announce John Paul II blessed. And from now on we can formally pray though his intercession. The whole world will be interested in this beatification. We will also take part in it through the media and special telebridges in various places around the world like it was during the funeral of John Paul II. We can predict that on 1 May 2011 the world will be motionless and beams of graces will flow from St Peter’s Square. Here we are entering the area of the activities of God who is a tiny being in each of us, who can grow in us, e.g., through the example of such people as John Paul II, and who can grant us his grace through his intercession. It is the realm of God’s might, greatness and holiness towards which we kneel humbly…
The Church is showing us the beauty and greatness of the man who adhered to God with all his life and who lived in accordance with the Gospel, involving his intellect, sensitivity and activities at service to Jesus. All these things make us feel dizzy. Since we come to such a moment when we say: God and John Paul II… These things are simply unimaginable. No wonder that people are looking forward to the day of this Pope’s beatification. It is a strictly religious, spiritual event. It is the revelation of the Church directed by the Holy Spirit but in some sense it is also a social event, an example of God’s beauty that is revealed in a weak man, leading him to perfection. Catholics should prepare themselves to John Paul II’s beatification above all in the spirit of prayer. We should thank God for the gift of a new advocate, for the gift of God’s kindness being revealed as a miracle recognised by the Church. Our observations and experiences make us know that there are numerous graces and miracles connected with the prayers through the intercession of John Paul II although they are not announced by the Church and not carefully examined. Nevertheless, Lord God gave us as if his seal in the miraculous healing of the French nun so that we could have John Paul II as our advocate before God. For us, Poles, the beatification of John Paul II is only a reminder of that wonderful man, priest, friend. We recollect the places he visited: Wadowice where he was born, Krakow where he lived and worked, Lublin where he lectured, his beloved Tatra Mountains with Zakopane and many other places which he visited, where he taught and which boast of remembering him. We cannot omit Czestochowa where he used to come as bishop and then as pope. Particular Polish dioceses recollect the unforgettable papal visits and interpret his words spoken to us anew.
All these things oblige us to participate in the beatification ceremony in Rome and to deep reflections, perhaps to reshape our consciences. This event can be by no means political since John Paul II never wanted to be involved in politics unless we call activities for the cause of God’s Decalogue and Jesus’ commands political. But such a ‘politics’ is activities that are worth of the highest glory and only such activities will be taken into account some day. Although one can hear in the media that millions of people will come to Rome, that it will be very crowded and hard to move around we should not be afraid of going there. There will be enough space for all people like it was during John Paul II’s funeral. We should only have good intentions and desires to experience this beatification in a religious way. And this is my advice to all those who are going to Rome and for those who are staying home. Let us experience this ceremony like our beloved Holy Father John Paul II would have wished.