» 05/01/2011, 00.00
Love for others, John Paul II’s legacy to young people
Huge numbers of foreigners, more than Italians, descended on Rome today, the day of the beatification of the Polish pope, acclaimed saint since his death. John Paul II was a guide especially important for young people, as many Asians recall.
Vatican City (AsiaNews) - "Asia. This is our common task for the third millennium, "wrote John Paul II in his book "Rise, Let us be on our Way". And today revealed how this pope was in turn essential for Catholics in Asia. Because in an attempt to find- with great difficulty - even a small space from which to witness the beatification ceremony, what struck the most was the many, many different languages and diverse features, each one unique. A riot of colours surrounding St Peter’s Square, Via della Conciliazione, Castel S. Angelo, Corso Vittorio Emanuele and small side streets, crammed with people from all over the world. A sea of umbrellas to shelter from the scorching sun, banners, young volunteers who were handing out free water bottles and fruit, children on their father’s shoulders to catch a better glimpse. Despite the weariness of the long wait and the heat, their eyes were always alert. Young people, in particular, and families. The legacy left by Pope John Paul II, beatified today, is immense.
It was difficult to move through the throngs of people. A score of Catholics from Singapore arrived at 7 in the morning. "Since the process of beatification began, I wanted to be here today," said one lady. "I met Pope John Paul II for the first time - she remembers - when he came to Singapore in 1986. When I saw him, I felt a deep sense of contentment". She's tired, but her voice is full of enthusiasm. "The greatest legacy of this pope - she says - is his message of love to all, especially to younger people. He always told young people to be vigilant, to have patience and be able to face all the difficulties and problems that life puts in our path. I taught for 37 years. Now I am retired but still working in education: I can say with joy that the young witness with their lives that they understand and accept his message. "
During his pontificate, John Paul II made many trips to Asia. In 1984 he was in Thailand. One young girl was there welcome him, among many. Today she is a grown woman, who came here to Rome to witness the Blessed pope. "His greatest teaching for me is his love for others and care for each other. Because it was what he did with people, especially children, "she says. She adds, with certainty: "He was a gentle man and a true saint on earth."
There were also numerous groups from the Philippines, the largest Christian majority Asian nation (94% of the population, of these 81% are Catholics). Couples, singles, families. Many participated in World Youth Day in Manila in 1995. All said they were "happy" that the beatification of John Paul II had taken place.
"Because this is what was pleasing to the Lord: John Paul II is blessed!" Proclaims Pope Benedict XVI at 11.15. And the screams and applause of the crowd who had come here today from all over the world gathered up his inheritance.
01/05/2011 VATICAN - ASIA
From Vietnam, Korea, Palestine and Israel to greet the new Blessed John Paul II
Thousands faced long hours of waiting in queues and travel for days just to show their devotion to Pope Wojtyla. Vietnamese pilgrims and Palestinians are asking the new blessed to watch over their countries, victims of violence and war.
07/04/2005 VATICAN - ASIA
Asia united in St Peter's to say goodbye to the Pope
Tributes and words of affection and gratitude by Asians in Rome to say their farewell to Pope John Paul II.
15/05/2006 RUSSIA - VATICAN
Largest ever pilgrimage of Russian Catholics to Rome
150 pilgrims are set to arrive today. The initiative will close the year dedicated to the commemoration of John Paul II. There are numerous testimonies from Russia for the beatification cause of the deceased pontiff. The pilgrims have said: "Praying with the pope is the dream of a lifetime."
Blessed John Paul II and our mission
Some "enlightened" Catholics criticise the "hurry" for his beatification. But the personality of John Paul II testified that faith is not about rules, abstract dogmas or sociological moralisms, but a relationship with Jesus Christ that changes lives. His consecration to Mary without sentimentality; contemplation and missionary zeal to bring Christ to the world, surpassing clerical closure and materialistic suffocation, these are the pillars of his message. He was the pope who launched the mission in Asia for the Third Millennium. AsiaNews is indebted to the vision of this great pope and blessed.
Pope tells young people to worship God to be free
Message on the occasion of the 2005 World Youth Day in Cologne, Germany.
Pope: together with the faithful in China on 24 May to celebrate Our Lady of Sheshan
During the Regina Caeli, Pope Francis speaks about the World Day of Prayer for the Church in China, instituted by Benedict XVI. Chinese Catholics must make a “personal contribution to communion among believers and to harmony in the whole society." AsiaNews Symposium on the Church in China is set for this week. Francis appeals for peace in the Central African Republic, and for loving “one another following the example of the Lord”. For him, “Sometimes conflicts, pride, envy, and divisions leave a blotch on the beautiful face of the Church.” Five new cardinals will be named, including a bishop from Laos.
May 24, 2017: 'China, the Cross is Red', AsiaNews Symposium
The event will be held to mark the World Day of Prayer for the Church in China. A title with many meanings: the Cross is red from the blood of the martyrs; From attempts to suffocate the faith with state control; Bceause of the contribution of hope that Christianity gives to a population tired of materialism and consumerism that is seeking new moral criteria. The theme is also about the great and unexpected religious rebirth in the country. Guests to include: Card. Pietro Parolin, Msgr. Savio Hon, the sociologist of religions Richard Madsen, the testimonies of Chinese priests and laity.
18/05/2017 ASIA - VATICAN
16/05/2017 CHINA-NORTH KOREA
AsiaNews IS ALSO A MONTHLY!
AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.