The Aura Of A Papal Visit
Americans were mesmerized by Pope Francis’ U.S. visit because their respect for him as a holy man who leads the Roman Catholic Church, his political influence addressing the Halls of the U.S. Congress, where nothing is revered anymore, and speaking to the nations at the United Nations in New York, as well as hugging, kissing, and blessing babies and children. He spoke to the issues of climate change, poverty, and family issues. The Press, Catholic and secular, focused on his image, persona, symbolic actions, and Catholic doctrine.
Two vivid images are implanted in my mind: At the Philadelphia Airport, the Pope paused to “bless” a quadriplegic that brought his family to tears; and a local reporter interviewed a local man who froze when the Pope came by, never taking pictures on his phone because he was too spellbound when being in his presence.
The Pope was seen hugging, kissing, laying hands on and blessing hundreds of people, but what were the “results” of those actions? Were any healed, delivered, or saved? Tangibly, how were lives changed? To become a Saint in the Catholic Church, you have had to perform at least two documented “miracles”. For a man who touched hundreds, the odds for at least two healings or miracles seem like good odds to qualify him for sainthood just on this one trip. Unfortunately, neither the Catholic Cable Channel nor the secular networks reported any miraculous healings during his visit.
Jesus too was mobbed by the multitudes in his time. When the woman with an issue of bad blood touched him, nobody knew who had done it until she confessed because of the throngs of people. Acts 5:15 records, “They even carried the sick out into the streets and laid them on cots and pallets, so that when Peter came by at least his shadow might fall on any of one of them.” People today fought to catch a glimpse of or be touched by or receive a “blessing” from their 21st Century Peter, Pope Francis. Are they getting the same results?
I would love to hear actual, personal testimonies from those touched, transformed, or changed in tangible, documented ways because of the Pope’s visit, not just testimonies of how they were awed or inspired by his image, his presence. I want to hear how “Christ” changed personal lives because of his faith and his actions. There is a part of me that still wants to see the supernatural through the most adored figure in the Roman Catholic Church.
I am not critical of the man, for like each one of use in the Priesthood of Believers, I know he too struggles with his faith. “Pray for me,” is Pope Francis’ continual request to his followers. I have no doubt that he is a very humble, pious, sincere man of faith, a holy man, but Jesus, Peter, Paul, and all the original apostles saw, felt, and released the supernatural.
Jesus usually instructed a person who had just been healed to keep it quiet, but they couldn’t; they had to tell others of the good news. When supernaturally touched by Jesus, one is not the same and wants to proclaim His wondrous “Acts” that he has performed.
If you, as a common believer, a member of the Priesthood of believers, is touched personally by Jesus, tell others! Your voice is as valid as the pope’s. Your testimony, your story, your experience is special and unique and needs to be told.
The voice and faith of a believer in Jesus is a powerful voice.