May 7th 2005

  Buy Issue 2706

Articles from this issue:

COVER STORY: SECRET INTELLIGENCE: New evidence of Soviet espionage in Australia

EDITORIAL: Australia and China: supping with the devil

CANBERRA OBSERVED: Australia's impending economic slump

SCHOOLS: Give academic excellence a sporting chance

NATIONAL COMPETITION POLICY: Review whitewashes National Competition Policy

TRADE: EU and US try to force China to cut textile exports

DRUGS: Howard Government's drugs campaign falters

REGIONAL VICTORIA: Radical activists' campaign of sabotage

STRAWS IN THE WIND: Labor Agonistes / Blankety Blank / Gentlemen versus players / EU Light Opera

RUSSIA: Baltic States to boycott Moscow's World War II memorial

1955 LABOR PARTY SPLIT: Conference marks 50th anniversary of Split

1955 LABOR PARTY SPLIT: The Great Labor Split remembered

CONSTITUTION: Dangers in Howard's new centralism

RELIGIOUS VILIFICATION LAWS: "Witch" sues over Christian Bible study

How to tackle abortion and pornography (letter)

John Paul II's greatest achievements (letter)

East Timor and West Papua resistance (letter)


Books promotion page

John Paul II's greatest achievements (letter)

by John Barich

News Weekly, May 7, 2005

Peter Westmore has managed to give an accurate account of John Paul II's contribution to world affairs (News Weekly, April 23, 2005). Little wonder that Jewish leaders have proposed him to be the unprecendented recipient of a posthumous Nobel Peace Prize.

The Pope's semi-official biographer, George Weigel, has assessed John Paul's pontificate to have been the most consequential since the Protestant Reformation. He based this judgement on what he considered the Pope's eight greatest achievements - later increased to ten: the renovation of the papacy, the full implementation of Vatican II, the collapse of communism, the clarification of the moral challenges facing free society, the insertion of ecumenism into the heart of Catholicism, the new dialogue with Judaism, the redefinition of inter-religious dialogue, a fresh approach to the sexual revolution with his theology of the body, the Catechism and what it represents, and the personal inspiration that has changed countless personal lives.

William Oddie, editor of John Paul the Great: Maker of the Post-Conciliar Church (2003), adds the Pope's powerful support for the new ecclesial movements, a support which, as Ian Ker says, "is firmly in the tradition of the popes who, at critical times in the Church's life, have discerned dramatic new ways in which the Spirit has raised up new charismatic movements for the renewal and propagation of the Christian faith."

John Barich,
Claremont, WA

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