New book chronicles Pope’s memories of John Paul II

.- Even 8 months after his death, the world is still abuzz about the legacy of Pope John Paul II. The man who would take his place, good friend, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, now shares his own memories of the late Holy Father in a new volume called, The Legacy of John Paul II: Images and Memories.

The new book, released in October by San Francisco-based Ignatius Press, uses the words and memories of now-Pope Benedict XVI and the stunning images of Vatican photographer, Giancarlo Giuliani, to chronicle the three-decade long papacy of a man already being hailed as “John Paul the Great.”

The book includes an excerpt from then-Cardinal Ratzinger’s funeral homily for the late Pope, in which he recalls that “none of us will be able to forget how in that last Easter Sunday of his life, the Holy Father…came once more to the window of the Apostolic Palace and one last time gave his blessig Urbi et Orbi.”

“We can be sure”, the future pontiff added, “that our beloved Pope is standing today at the window of the Father’s house, that he sees us and blesses us.”

The handsome, red-covered book, being released in English only--a rare act for a book on the Pope--includes photos of the 1981 assassination attempt on his life, as well as meetings with world political, religious leaders and faithful around the globe.

George Weigel, biographer of John Paul II, said that “Pope Benedict’s tribute to his extraordinary predecessor is both testimony and pledge: a testimony to the depth of human brotherhood that friendship with Christ makes possible, and a pledge to continue, extend and deepen the witness of the office of Peter.”

John Paul died on April 2nd of this year quietly in his room at the Vatican. In the days and weeks following, media and faithful flocked to the Eternal City in numbers never before seen. It has been said that more people saw the late Holy Father in person than any other person in history.

The Legacy of John Paul II: Images and Memories can be purchased from Ignatius Press for $19.95 at www.ignatius.com.

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