Saturday, April 19, 2008
The visit of Pope Benedict XVI has been a great moment for those of us of German heritage. I just finished watching Benedict address the youth at St. Joseph's Seminary. My parents both expressed their worry that a German would be able to express his emotions. They both love the Pope as he has done very well in a liturgical sense but they worried if he could connect with his people. This worry was from their upbringing in German American households where emotion was not something that was expressed openly among families.
After watching the Pope on TV, I called my mother. She was thrilled by the Pope's performance. She spoke to me in the German of her youth. She didn't hear a lot of English until she went to school. She was thrilled about Benedict and his connection to the youth he spoke to about their devotion to the faith. I am excited for her and my dad that they are comfortable that a German Pope is capable of expressing his love for his people. My mother ended our conversation with a statement she said to us as children many times. It always warms my heart to hear her or my grandmother say to us "Ich liebe dich." I love you.