This handy little book contains hundreds of direct quotes and short sayings of St. John Paul II, arranged according to the Christian virtues and other spiritual topics, allowing the reader to encounter his thoughts about particular aspects of the Christian life in a more organized manner.
This small book provides a wealth of quotations from St. Pope John Paul II. Its small size and durable binding are perfect for keeping it with you throughout the day to provide spiritual nourishment while you work and live.
We speak of a Pope as the “Successor of St. Peter”. And in the case of Pope John Paul II, we can add “Successor of St. Paul”. Karol Wojtyla was captivated by the gospel and the love of Christ Jesus. This divine love welled up within him and demanded a response, a response that Karol Wojtyla gave freely, increasingly, and daily. Responding to the love of God characterized the life of Karol Wojtyla and eventually brought him onto the public stage. Pope John Paul II, ministering from the Chair of St. Peter and mirroring the missionary zeal of St. Paul, sought to bring the message of Christ and His transforming love to all parts of the world.
Pope John Paul II lived to encounter Christ and to encounter men and women in the hope that he could inspire in them a deep searching for Christ who, the Second Vatican Council proclaimed, shows man and his meaning to himself (cf. Gaudium et Spes, 22). Thus Christ is the answer to the question that is every human person’s life. Pope John Paul II was determined to spend himself to ask the question and to raise the answer found in the love of God, revealed in His Son Jesus Christ and him crucified (cf. 1 Cor. 2:2). In every season and setting of his life – in youth and seniority, in vigor and in frailty, in public and in private – Pope John Paul II was faithful in this commitment.
For five years as a student of theology during my priestly formation at the Pontifical North American College in Rome, I had the privilege of living at the center of the Universal Church during the reign of Pope John Paul II. I was able to see more up close the life and ministry of a great priest. Listening to him speak, attending his public and private Masses, serving him at the sacred altar, meeting him personally, reading his writings, and praying with him, I had many privileged experiences to encounter this man whose sanctity is legendary and inspiring.
Oddly enough the memory I have of him that, for me, most characterizes his life and priestly commitment was not a personal encounter at all. It was June 29, 2000, the Solemnity of Sts. Peter & Paul, and I was present at the Holy Mass in St. Peter’s Square celebrated by Pope John Paul II. It was my last full day in the Eternal City and I had a flight home the next day to begin preaching the gospel and doing the work of a priest in my home diocese. The sacred music swelled as the Pope came into view in the Square. As the Pope walked out onto the front porch level of the Basilica, my line of sight a few levels down from the porch was basically at the level of the Pope’s feet. At that time he was 80 years old and his physical frailty was obvious. As I stared at the shoes of the fisherman and watched those famous shoes shuffle with painful determination toward the altar, my eyes filled with tears – tears of awe. There was a man who had every right to appoint a cardinal to take the Mass for him, a man who had every reason to give himself rest in his physical pain. Yet he marched on. He vested, he prepared, and he exerted every bit of energy he had to get himself to the altar to lead God’s holy people in the greatest prayer we have. In that moment, preparing to return home to begin working as a priest, I hoped that I might develop at least a portion of that zeal and determination. I prayed that I too might be faithful in spending myself to preach the gospel. Those shuffling shoes became, for me, a sign of fidelity.
May the passages in this book inspire each reader to be captivated by the gospel and the love of Christ Jesus, and may our footsteps give glory to God so that others may come to know the love of God that compels us in our Christian journey. Saint Pope John Paul II: Pray for us!
Rev. Stephen V. Hamilton, S.T.L
Archdiocese of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Building Something Beautiful For God –
To Last A Thousand Years
Our Lady of Clear Creek Abbey is a Benedictine community belonging to the Solesmes Congregation and, like other monasteries of the Solesmes Congregation, is to be counted among the institutes entirely ordered towards contemplation. It was founded in 1999 from the Abbey of Our Lady of Fontgombault in France and is located in the Diocese of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Clear Creek became an abbey in 2010 and counts 55 monks, who devote themselves to God alone in the hidden life, in silence and solitude, in constant prayer and willing penance.
After twenty years of existence, we are happy, by the grace of God, to have completed two large buildings and a sizable portion of our abbatial church. We started building the “Chapter House” to accommodate the growing number of monks and provide a Sacristy, Infirmary, classrooms and the Chapter itself. Please help us continue this arduous, but important work for the glory of God.
Our Lady of Clear Creek Abbey
5804 W Monastery Road
Hulbert, OK 74441-5698
Phone (918) 772-2454