Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Be Exalted, O, Lord

If I were to be categorized religiously, I supposed I'd find myself within the broad boundaries of evangelical Christianity. Of course, within that category are many, and varied, subcategories. From this Protestant perspective then, I suppose what I'm about to say might sound strange. I've found myself drawn repeatedly to the media's coverage of Pope John Paul II's death and upcoming funeral.

Admittedly, I am intrigued by Catholicism's traditions and religious mysteries. Who is the secretly named cardinal that was held "in pectore" (in the heart) by the Pope? If there really is such a person, will the documents left by the John Paul II reveal his name? What political winds blow through the college of cardinals as they elect a new pope? And, what's the actual signicance of the white puffs of smoke sent up, signaling the election of the Church's new leader?

While there are serious theological differences between Catholics and Protestants (and serious differences between Christians in these broad categories), the death of this pope has created something glorious--the name of Jesus Christ will be heard throughout the world over the next few days. It might be said in the stoic tone of a detached reporter, or spoken with deep fervor from believers. Either way, the name of Jesus will be heard. For that, I am grateful.

May Your name, O Lord, be exalted. And, may you draw all people to Your Son through whom there is forgiveness and grace.