Pope John XXIII
As described by Pope John Paul II: “Everyone remembers the image of Pope John’s smiling face and two outstretched arms embracing the whole world. How many people were won over by his simplicity of heart, combined with a broad experience of people and things! The breath of newness he brought certainly did not concern doctrine, but rather the way to explain it; his style of speaking and acting was new, as was his friendly approach to ordinary people and to the powerful of the world. It was in this spirit that he called the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council, thereby turning a new page in the Church’s history Christians heard themselves called to proclaim the Gospel with renewed courage and greater attentiveness to the “signs” of the times. The Council was a truly prophetic insight of this elderly Pontiff who, even amid many difficulties, opened a season of hope for Christians and for humanity. In the last moments of his earthly life, he entrusted his testament to the Church: “What counts the most in life is blessed Jesus Christ, his holy Church, his Gospel, truth and goodness”.
“One must never confuse error and a person who errs…. The person who errs is always and above all a human being, and he retains in every case his dignity as a human person, and he must be always regarded and treated in accordance with that lofty dignity.
Besides in every human being there is a need that is congenital to his nature and never becomes extinguished, compelling him to break through the web of error and open his mind to the knowledge of truth.”
~ Pope John XXII