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Last updated on June 15th, 2017 at 04:55 pm
Bruce Wilson provides yet more evidence of Pope John Paul II’s goodness:
The Sandinista movement in Nicaragua contained many priests fighting openly or undercover against the old oligarchy.
John Paul was having none of them, though. Before his visit he had made it clear that there was no role for priests in revolutionary politics, and to what was widespread dismay in many Centro churches insisted that priests could be excommunicated if they persisted.
Following him around those hot and dusty little countries, I saw just how tough this man could be. Some of the priests wisely found themselves reasons to be unavailable at the time. Those who stayed wished they had not.
One, who dropped to his knees to kiss the Pope’s ring, instead saw the hand withdrawn to be replaced by an admonishing, wagging finger and a solid ticking-off.
Many Central American liberals simply could not understand it. John Paul II was certainly a known anti-Soviet influence, perhaps the most influential of all anti-Soviet influences. But these were no raging old-style Soviet commies, they said, just revolutionaries for social justice.
They were left stranded. John Paul had made up his mind for his own reasons.
Way to go, Pope. But Wilson wasn’t impressed:
This reporter, though, will always remember that hot and dusty day in Central America and wonder just why it was John Paul II took the side he took in that struggle that seemed so straightforward.
Key word: “seemed”.
UPDATE. David Marr thinks the Pope’s death may result in a better world. Marr complained two years ago about the brutalising effects of war, which led some to describe terrorists as cockroaches; what’s his excuse?
UPDATE II. Recall Barry Cassidy’s words after September 11: “At the ABC, a memo went out about a week ago to all radio commentators that they were not to say anything derogatory about the Taliban … So here I am on Channel 10, I can say that the Taliban execute women for adultery. They’ve been known to throw acid in the face of young girls who don’t wear veils and so on. I can get it off my chest on Channel 10 but I can’t say it on the ABC.” But Marr can say that the Pope’s death might be a good thing.
UPDATE III. Hans Nyberg provides brilliant Quicktime VR panoramas from Vatican City.
UPDATE IV. Fidel Castro disagrees with David Marr.
UPDATE V. Video highlights of the Pope’s life.
UPDATE VI. Al Jazeera’s coverage of the Pope’s death hasn’t delighted extremists.