Friday, April 08, 2005

The funeral of Pope John Paul II

All-nighters really aren't my bag anymore, especially since I put in my fair share in college, so staying up to watch the funeral for John Paul II last night (1 a.m. L.A. time!) wasn't necessariliy a good idea on a physiological basis. (Let's just say that my Friday turned into a nap day.) But I'm so glad that I did it. I'm not a big fan of organized religion in general and, in my bloated little mind, there are times when I think even God has trouble with a lot of what's done in His (or Her) name here on earth. But you didn't have to be a regular churchgoer to be totally moved by the experience of viewing the Pope's services. The chills and the emotions were striking, the spontaneous reactions of the huge crowd of pilgrims exhilirating. I was particularly moved when the ministers of the Eastern Orthodox Church prayed in their own way over John Paul's coffin; I was halfway expecting the rabbis and imams who also were in attendance to get their turn, but that probably was pushing it for what was a Christian service. And bravo to CNN to keeping their commentary sparse, unlike what I heard happened on some of the other networks, including one that chatted all the way through the stirring and eerie Litany of the Saints. This is one "instant event" I hope hits the DVD market sooner rather than later - with the proceeds going to charity, of course. (Idiot that I was, I didn't tape it.)

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