Responding to God's love, vital aim of John Paul II's life

VATICAN CITY, APR 2, 2007 (VIS) – At midday today in the basilica of St. John Lateran, the closing session was held of the diocesan investigation into the life, virtues and fame of sanctity of Servant of God John Paul II, the first step in the process of beatification of the late pontiff who died on April 2, 2005.

The diocesan phase was closed by Cardinal Camillo Ruini, His Holiness’ vicar general for the diocese of Rome, with an address focussing upon the portrayal of the spiritual qualities of John Paul II. “At the beginning, at the center and at the peak of such a portrait,” said the cardinal, “we cannot but put Karol Wojtyla’s personal relationship with God. A relationship that was already strong, intimate and profound in his boyhood, and that never ceased to develop and grow stronger, producing fruits in all dimensions of his life.

“Here, we are in the presence of the Mystery,” he added. “In the first place the mystery of the preferential love with which God the Father loved this Polish boy, united him to Himself and then maintained this union; not saving him from the trials of life – on the contrary, associating him ever and anew to the cross of His Son – but also giving him the courage to love the cross, and the spiritual intelligence to see, through the cross, the face of the Father.

“In the certainty of being loved by God and in the joy of returning this love, Karol Wojtyla found the meaning, unity and aim of his own life. All those who knew him, from near or only from afar, were struck by the richness of his humanity, by his complete fulfillment as a man. But even more illuminating and important is the fact that such fullness of humanity coincided, in the end, with his relationship with God, in other words with his sanctity.”

The opening session of the diocesan investigation took place in the same basilica on June 28 2005, less than three months after John Paul II’s death, thanks to the fact that Benedict XVI waived the normal waiting period of five years after the death of a Servant of God.

The diocesan investigation over, the acts and documents will now pass to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, where all the material will be studied.

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