Reflections on Papal Visit Day One

Well, I enjoyed the first day of the papal visit to the UK.
How about you ?
Just for one day it was good to put aside some of the extreme  scurrilous and vulgar nastiness that has accompanied this papal visit and concentrate on the fact that this 83 year old frail man came to celebrate Mass with the Catholics of this land. 
For the first time I was able to connect with the human Joseph Ratzinger as well as the position he holds. I admire his stamina and I found I was genuinely moved by him at certain moments, He does seem shy and unprepossessing and there is a calmness about him that drew me in.
 For me then, today was a simple gift to receive and share in : a spiritual gift of great richness to join in with millions of other watching and celebrating our faith.
Yes there are still many things I do not agree with but faith is faith and hope in the Holy Spirit still carries me forward, even if most days I take three steps back for every two forward. 
Happily, today was not one of those days . He said it was "our church".
Any gaffes then ?

The secular humanists were first off the block in criticising the Pope's homily.
The British Humanist Association condemned what it saw as Benedict's "notion that it was the atheism of Nazis that led to their extremist and hateful views" 
No doubt there will be much debate on this but I am not in the mood for that this evening. 
It was a good day .I've started to bond with the Pope and that for me is quite a revelation  !!
So I move onto day 2 with some hope .............

Press conference on Papal Plane Day 1  full text is here

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