John Paul II's Sanctity Began Early, Cardinal Says
VATICAN CITY, APRIL 2, 2007 (Zenit.org).- Pope John Paul II's intense relationship with God was already profound in his youth, said Cardinal Camillo Ruini at the close of the diocesan phase of the Pontiff's beatification process.
Cardinal Ruini presided over the closing session of the diocesan investigation today at the Basilica of St. John Lateran, on the second anniversary of the death of John Paul II. ...
In his homily during the closing ceremony, Cardinal Ruini, the vicar of Benedict XVI for Rome, commented on John Paul II's intense spiritual life.
The cardinal said that Karol Wojtyla's spiritual life was "already strong, intimate and profound in his boyhood, and that [it] never ceased to develop and grow stronger, producing fruits in all dimensions of his life."
Cardinal Ruini added that God never sheltered Wojtyla from the trials of life, but rather was constantly "associating him ever and anew to the cross of his Son ... giving him the courage to love the cross, and the spiritual intelligence to see, through the cross, the face of the Father."
The cardinal continued: "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."
Cardinal Ruini said that the faith of John Paul II was that "of a man who, in a certain sense, had already seen the Lord, and who had made the direct experience of the mysterious and salvific presence of God in his spirit and in his life."
It is because of this faith, continued the cardinal, that Wojtyla had felt "the necessity and the duty to offer and transmit to all the truth that saves."
Cardinal Ruini also recalled the last moments of John Paul II.
With the help of those present in his apartment, John Paul II prayed "all the daily prayers: adoration, meditation and he even anticipated the office of the readings for Sunday," said the cardinal.
The cardinal continued: "Then, he said with an exceedingly weak voice to Sister Tobiana Sobotka, his authentic guardian angel: 'Let the Lord come.'