I have heard many comments since the burial of Sen. Ted Kennedy and the blessing given by the pope in light of Kennedy's record on abortion. I think those who are Roman Catholic politicians ought to sit up and take notice exactly of what happened in the exchange of those letters between Pope Benedict XVI and Sen. Kennedy.
Senator Kennedy wrote to ask for a special blessing from the pontiff with the consideration that he was gravely ill. In the portion of the letter that was revealed, we see a man who pleads his case and admitsfailing, even though he has tried to follow Church teachings. Now, we can never know Senator kennedy's confession, but we can hope that he repented of his stances on abortion and other stances that were contrary to Catholic teaching.
The fact is that Pope Benedict XVI did give his apostolic blessing. This is a significant blessing, indeed. I do not think that he would offer such a blessing unless he felt there was a genuine understanding of the sins commited and the repentence necessary.
If this is the case, then I think it would be important for our Roman Catholic brothers and sisters involved in politics to sit up and take notice. If Sen. Kennedy sought and apostolic blessing, he must have come to the realization that he was out of line in that area of Catholic teaching. And like so many of us, he, too, sought to be made whole again in the Church.
Speaking from the perspective of a returning Catholic, I can admit that I did not follow many of the teaching of the Catholic Church, but when I returned, I also came to the clear realization that some of my stances were not in line with the teachings of the Church. I was fortunate to realize this while still healthy. I could repent of these failings and come to the Sacrament of Penance. I hope it was the case, too, with Senator Kennedy. Now I would pray that all of those who currently support the Pro-Choice agenda would re-consider their position in light of this.