Senator Lucio's Letterhead

STATEMENT

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Saturday, April 2, 2005
CONTACT: Doris Sanchez , Press Secretary
Phone: (512) 463-0385

DEATH OF POPE JOHN PAUL II

Austin, TX--I join the world in mourning one of the greatest spiritual leaders in history. He will forever be remembered as the strongest of advocates for the oppressed and the poor throughout the world. Pope John Paul stood firm on his messages of peace and reconciliation despite the turbulent times he lived in.

As a Roman Catholic myself, I took comfort in his inspirational messages, which condemned communism and excesses in capitalism. As an elected official, I have derived courage from his self-less conviction to rendering service. One of his most striking messages that resonated around the world was forgiveness of others. As long as I live, I will never forget that the Pontiff went to the prison that was holding the man who had shot him, and offered the man his utter forgiveness and unconditional love.

A highly educated man, Pope John Paul II held two doctorates, and was once a professor of ethics. He fully accepted the mission God put forth before him, becoming the third longest serving pope in history. No adversity he faced, including old age and Parkinson's disease, prevented him from reaching out to every nation on the globe, offering prayers of comfort and hope.

Truly, he was a holy man.

May his soul now rest in the place he already seemed to know so well.

By Senator Eddie Lucio, Jr

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