Lessons to be learned from Pope's visit to USA

At the end of the day, it wasn't stagecraft or slick PR strategies that made the trip a success. It was the gut-level impression of kindness and candor that radiated from the pope. If Catholicism hopes to gain a sympathetic hearing,its capacity to project those two qualities loom as the essential prerequisite.

Here's the thing, however: It's not enough merely to project kindness and candor. We actually have to be kind and candid -- and that, as any spiritual guide will tell you, is never a "once and for all" deal. It requires daily resolve. Living up to that standard, personally and institutionally, represents perhaps the most lasting challenge left behind by Benedict XVI's six days in America.

All Things Catholic by John L. Allen, Jr.
Friday, May 9, 2008 - Vol. 7, No. 27
National Catholic Reporter


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