| Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement on the beatification of Pope John Paul II.|
OTTAWA – Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada today issued the following statement on the beatification of Pope John Paul II.
“Pope John Paul II was one of the transformative global leaders of the 20th century. Widely credited with playing a key role in bringing a peaceful end to the Cold War, his immense influence sprang from a profound belief in the dignity of the human person and the power of human freedom. He was one of those rare leaders in history whose beliefs were vindicated dramatically by events in his own lifetime.
“A scholar of great accomplishment and a pastor of rare gifts, in his long and eventful reign Pope John Paul II made a deep impression on a generation of young Catholics, as shown by the hundreds of thousands who attended the extraordinary World Youth Day celebrations in Toronto in 2002.
“Devoted to the cause of Christian unity and interfaith dialogue, he won the admiration and affection of people of goodwill around the world. He made historic progress in strengthening relationships between Catholics and Jews, and worked tirelessly to promote understanding and mutual respect among all faiths.
“On behalf of my wife Laureen and our entire Conservative team, we join the millions of Catholics in Canada in celebrating this historic and happy occasion.”
Conservative Press Office 4/30/2011