Four years ago today, Pope John Paul II died after a long struggle. It was agonizing to watch the once-vibrant, globetrotting pope from Poland succumb to the ravages of Parkinson’s and related ailments. His death was a moving moment for all. The world mourned, and millions turned out for his very moving funeral at St. Peter’s Basilica.
John Thavis, CNS Rome bureau chief, covered the pope almost as long as any journalist in the Vatican press corps. Here again is his reflection from 2005 on what it was like to cover a man who loved life, the church and the world as much as Karol Wotyla.