The Commission Study:
Dedicated to John Paul II
Written by Angele Regnier
We’ve all been waiting for today with joy and it’s finally here: the beatification of Pope John Paul the Great. I think it was January 14th (2005) when I read Fr. Tom Rosica’s email while he was at the Verbum Domini meetings in Rome, and I cried as soon as I heard the news. Our late Holy Father meant so much to us all but it was an especially emotional word for me as the bits and pieces of the Commission study were falling into place. The news that it would be, May 1, 2005, was like a little gift because Commission, the small jewel entrusted to our care, was also finally edited for public release on that day.
This is huge. Just huge, huge, huge. It’s a sign that the Father takes care of us, that He continually makes Himself a part of our call, that He is walking with us every step of the way. Blessed John Paul II has also been walking with us as we’ve finished Commission. It’s no secret that the study begins with an extended dedication to him; it reads: “All CCO staff members and students would agree that our ministry has been profoundly marked by the missionary heart of Blessed John Paul II.” Nothing could be more true.
Since the beginning, André (Regnier) and I have immersed ourselves in the evangelization teachings of John Paul II. Our earliest days were inspired by Redemptoris Missio, and we were continually fed on the journey by NovoMillenio Inuente, his preparations for the Jubilee year, and the countless messages on the World Youth Days. He was more than a leader, he was a mentor and father. It was through his prophetic and loving guidance that CCO’s heart began to beat, and our heart has slowly been distilled into our fifth faith study.
May 11, 2005 marked a time of great grace in our lives. Our spiritual father, our inspiration for as long as we’ve been responding to the call, was being honoured by the Body of Christ for his great gift to the Church: an understanding of who we are and where we are going. I like to think of Commission as one of the great love letters he’s left behind, written by our hands but striving to preserve the heart and message of his great pontificate. There is great grace for us today as our novena comes to an end. We have a powerful intercessor on our behalf, one who knew us and supported how we have taken up the challenge he left for us. The light of God burned within him, and we safeguard that fire within Commission, and with it we bring hope to the world that day is coming, and coming soon.