August 19, 2002—Ground Zero Plus 341

Global Father of Vigilance Tells World:
"I'll Be Back!"
Cliff McKenzie
   Editor, New York City Combat Correspondent News

       GROUND ZERO, New York City, August 19--The "Global Father Of Vigilance" is very old.  He's 82.  The picture of him above was taken when he was 18.   He roams the globe telling people to be Vigilant, urging parents to protect the family, to care about the children, not just their own, but all children--both the born and unborn--for, he says, they are the gift of the present and the hope of the future.
      Nowadays, his hands shake uncontrollably as he talks in halting words.  His head is bent nearly to his lap; his back is sculpted into a large S-curve from a disease that Terrorizes his body, rendering his nervous system unable to walk without aid, tiring him on his global mission to remind the citizens of the modern world that in the mad rush to clone human beings, to abort unborn children, to seek the comforts of technology--the children, the values of the family are being lost.   He pleads with the world to stop and think, to be Vigilant about the future of the children, and their children's children.  He asks those who kill and those who seek revenge to put down their swords, to find other solutions than Terrorism to resolve the conflicts of the world, or between neighbors, and especially the Terrorism within a family that results in abuse, physical or emotional, turning a child into a victim rather than a flower of growth.
      Many think the "Global Father Of Vigilance" should retire.  They pontificate that he is too old, to infirmed to make his mark on the "modern world," and ask that he be replaced with a younger, healthier messenger.
      Vigilance is about Courage, Conviction and Right Actions.   One of Terrorism's greatest components is Complacency--giving up, capitulating, taking a back seat, or just not caring any more.   
       The Global Father of Vigilance isn't ready to fall victim to the worst of all human diseases--Complacency.   The physical ailments that hamper his mobility have not impaired his purpose, or the clarity of its vision.
       He spoke yesterday to over 2 million people gathered in his country to hear his words, to see the man who has traveled the world as the Ambassador of Vigilance, who has been shot and wounded by a Terrorist, who has met with the world's top leaders to negotiate a "peaceful earth," who survived the Nazi occupation of his country by being a stonecutter, vowing to do his best to rid the world of the Terrorism's created by the Hitler's and Osama bin Ladens, or the people who "just don't care," or believe that modern civilization is more capable of managing the world with human systems than with ones founded on faith, or belief in the Sentinels of Vigilance--the spirits of all the good in human beings.
       This man, Karol Wojtyla, isn't ready to turn over his spurs to some other "Sheriff of Vigilance" because his bones ache, or his head droops, or his hands shake from Parkinson's disease.  
       Speaking to the millions of his fans, his faithful and native Citizens of Vigilance in Cracow, Poland, Karol Wojtlyla used a line from action hero Arnold Schwarzenegger to quell rumors that he should hand over his Shield of Vigilance to someone healthier, more mobile, younger to serve in his shoes.

         At the end of his speech to the hundreds of thousands crowded to see and hear the man who was born 30 miles from Cracow, he paused:  "I would also like to add, 'See you again,' but I leave this completely in God's hands."     While the Pope's final words were more reserved than Schwarzenegger's famous line, "I'll be back," the message was just as clear.   Pope John Paul II wasn't retiring from anything.
       In his speech, Karol Wojtyla who was ordained a priest in 1946, warned the estimated crowd of 2 to 2.6 million that modern civilization has been rejecting divine law and moral principles and openly attacks the family through issues like abortion, cloning and euthanasia.   He laid the blame partly on the "noisy propaganda of liberalism, of freedom without truth or responsibility."  One of his concerns is that under Poland's freedom from communism and its embracement of capitalism, has brought both good and bad with it.  One of the "bads" he points out is legalization of abortion and great disparities in wealth have been created.
       I don't promote personally any religion, but I do the belief in a Higher Power, or God, as one might understand that God.    I've heard the word described as an acronym for Good-Orderly-Direction.   I interpret that to mean, Vigilance--Courage, Conviction and Right Actions.   
      Karol Wojtyla is exhibiting his Vigilance in the face of Parkinson's disease.   He courageously continues his pilgrimages to the far corners of the earth, reaching out in a global attempt to represent the Father of Vigilance, to rekindle in the face of civilization the priorities of human evaluation that exceed those of cloning or individual rights--and replace them with tested duties of caring more for the children's children's children than any other quest.   In summary, this goal is unconditional love for all, beginning with the children and then extending outward.
       Pope John Paul II has traveled over 500,000 miles on his mission to bring the message of "Vigilance" rather than "Terrorism" to the world, equal to 20 trips around the world, or a round trip to the moon and back.
      He has visited 125 countries--see chart below--from Albania to Zimbabwe and is the most traveled Pope in history.  He is also the first Pope of non-Italian birth for 450 years.
      He promotes Vigilance rather than evangelizes Catholicism.   Whether it is a country steeped in communism and rejecting the public expression of any religion such as the Soviet Union prior to its collapse, or South American countries full of totalitarianism, the Pope's hands, heart and words reach out to reminding his audiences that Terrorism is finite and Vigilance infinite and faith is an act of Courage while the lack of it a state of Complacency leaving children vulnerable to secularism and its attendant virus: "what's- good-for-me-today" that polarizes so many from truths far greater than present myopic views.
       I hold Karol Wojtyla in high regard.   In 1981 a 24-year-old Terrorist tried to kill him, critically wounding him when he shot him point blank.  The bullet smashed into the Pope's abdomen, left hand and right arm, but miraculously missed any vital organs   Two years later John Paul went to the prison where Turkish citizen  Mehmet Ali  Agca was serving a life sentence and reaffirmed the personal pardon he had given him three days after the shooting.   
      Life hasn't been easy Karol Wojtyla since October 16 when he was elected Pope and put on the Shoes of the Fisherman, those of St. Peter, giving him, under Catholic believe, the authority of God's messenger on earth.
     Some give him credit, or his share of it, for the crumbling of the Berlin Wall, and the end of communism throughout Europe.   Others regard him as a neutral zone, where world leaders can settle disputes with his help. 
     Few can argue his intentions--to protect the children with peace.
     But his problems have been as great as his glories.   The recent disclosure of child abuse by Catholic priests shattered the confidence in the Church as a sanctuary from the world's evils.    It carved a great gash into the Church's credibility, and the shadow of the crimes fall ultimately upon Rome, to where all roads from Catholic churches ultimately lead.
     There is also the growing pressure of the Muslim religions escalating at a rapid pace over Christianity worldwide.  According to Jay Gary, winner of the Earl Award at the World Future Society, since 1970 the number of Muslims has doubled to 1.2 billion.  By 2025 the number of Muslims is projected to be 2 billion versus 3 billion Christians.
     The non-religious world, however, is stabilizing.   Mr. Gary sees the number of agnostics, atheists, free thinkers and non-religious to remain at 15% of the world population.
     Worldwide, women are increasing in numbers as part of the clergy.  At the turn of the century (1900) less than 1% were members.   Today, 5% of global clergy comprises women.   In the United States, he says, 10% of the clergy are women-at-the-pulpit.
      This brings up the Pope's biggest internal political issue--the right of women to be priests.   A conservative, Karol Wojtyla has refused pressures to bring women up to the altar.   In line with this issue is the one of priestly celibacy.
      Fundamentally, one might think the Pope's health a major reason for him to "retire" his post.    With vital issues on the table, high energy and a sharp mind might be called upon to better serve the flock.   But as the Father of Vigilance, one who survived Nazi's, Terrorist attacks, the union of Europe, the assault on the Church's moral credibility, he's not passing on his shoes--at least, not yet.
       He's still hammering home to his followers, and those who bend their ears to his message, that our first and foremost responsibility is to the "children of God," regardless of what denominational umbrella that represents.
      He is also warning modern society to not "tamper with God's miracles,"--the issue of cloning and abortion and euthanasia. 
      Who listens?
      In Cracow, Poland, where he spoke to millions the other day, Teresa Witkowska, a bank worker in the city said, "He gives us a very special look at ourselves."  But then she added, "Many people listen to him, and then they forget."
     It is the "forgetting" of the message of the Father of Vigilance that most concerns me.   Instead of calling it "forgetting," I call it Complacency.
     Modern society shuns the old for the new.   This has been true since the first wheel was carved out of stone, and the printing press came into being, and the light bulb, and now cellular phones and the Internet.   Faster, sleeker, more modern has been the goal.  And with that rapid rush toward a more comfortable way of life, we have ensnarled ourselves in what many call "secular humanism," the concern more for ourselves than for others.
     I don't think personally that "modern man" today is any less "modern" than our ancestors who decided to turn a stick into a fishing pole, or found a way to use fire and control it, or scrawled out the first "book" on dried leaves, or dug the first well.   We are creatures of growth and evolution, which can never be stopped as long as we have the desire for a "better world."
     But for whom do we better the world?
     If we are true Citizens of Vigilance, as exampled by Karol Wojtyla, then our vision needs to focus on the children, and their children's children's children.  And, not just our own, or those of our nation, but all children--all the innocent.

          In 1985 Pope John Paul established World Youth Day, a time when hundreds of thousands of young people learned more about faith, about each other, about finding better ways to resolve differences than through war or violence.
     I'd like him to create World Vigilance Day, a tribute to not just the youth, but to all sizes and shapes of "global family members."  I'd like him to try and get the Muslims and Christians to take the non-denominational Pledge of Vigilance, as well as all those who believe in some higher order.
     I believe it our duty as Citizens of Vigilance, Parents of Vigilance, Loved Ones of Vigilance, to carry on where the John Paul has led us--to the crossroads of Terrorism or Vigilance.
     I further believe that while one chooses not to become a Citizen of Vigilance or take the Pledge of Vigilance, this does not exempt them from responsibility.    It only suggests they are Complacent, indifferent, not willing to take action.   If on is truly committed to the future of the children, he or she will act accordingly.
     Without a Pledge staring one in the face to remind him or her of that duty, he or she becomes a subject as anyone to the last comment by Ms. Witkowska:  "Many people listen to him, and then they forget."

Countries And Dates Of Papal Visits

  1. Albania (April 1993)
  2. Angola (June 1992)
  3. Argentina (June 1982, March 1987)
  4. Australia (November 1986, January 1995)
  5. Austria (September 1983, June 1988, June 1998)
  6. Bahamas (January 1979)
  7. Bangladesh (November 1986)
  8. Belgium (May 1985, June 1995)
  9. Belize (March 1983)
  10. Benin (February 1982, February 1993)
  11. Bolivia (May 1988)
  12. Bosnia and Herzegovina (April 1997)
  13. Botswana (September 1988)
  14. Brazil (June 1980, June 1982, October 1991, October 1997)
  15. Burkina Faso (May 1980, January 1990)
  16. Burundi (September 1990)
  17. Cameroon (August 1985, September 1995)
  18. Canada (September 1984, September 1987)
  19. Cape Verde (January 1990)
  20. Central African Republic (August 1985)
  21. Chad (January 1990)
  22. Chile (March 1987)
  23. Colombia (July 1986)
  24. Congo (May 1980)
  25. Costa Rica (March 1983)
  26. Croatia (September 1994, October 1998)
  27. Cuba (January 1998)
  28. Curacao (May 1990)
  29. Czech Republic (April 1990, May 1995, April 1997)
  30. Denmark (June 1989)
  31. Dominican Republic (January 1979, October 1984, October 1992)
  32. Ecuador (January 1985)
  33. Egypt (February 2000)
  34. El Salvador (March 1983, February 1996)
  35. Equatorial Guinea (February 1982)
  36. Estonia (September 1993)
  37. Fiji (November 1986)
  38. Finland (June 1989)
  39. France (May 1980, August 1983, October 1986, October 1988, September 1996, September 1997)
  40. Gabon (February 1982)
  41. Gambia (February 1992)
  42. Georgia (November 1999)
  43. Germany (November 1980, April 1987, June 1996)
  44. Ghana (May 1980)
  45. Great Britain (May 1982)
  46. Greece (2001)
  47. Guam (February 1980)
  48. Guatemala (March 1983, February 1996)
  49. Guinea (February 1992)
  50. Guinea-Bissau (January 1990)
  51. Haiti (March 1983)
  52. Honduras (March 1983)
  53. Hungary (August 1991, September 1996)
  54. Iceland (June 1989)
  55. India (January 1986, November 1999)
  56. Indonesia (October 1989)
  57. Ireland (September 1979)
  58. Israel (March 2000)
  59. Ivory Coast (May 1980, August 1985, September 1990)
  60. Jamaica (August 1993)
  61. Japan (February 1980)
  62. Jordan (March 2000)
  63. Kenya (May 1980, August 1985, September 1995)
  64. La Reunion Island (April 1989)
  65. Latvia (September 1993)
  66. Lebanon (May 1997)
  67. Lesotho (September 1988)
  68. Liechtenstein (September 1985)
  69. Lithuania (September 1993)
  70. Luxembourg (May 1985)
  71. Madagascar (April 1989)
  72. Malawi (April 1989)
  73. Mali (January 1990)
  74. Malta (May 1990, 2001)
  75. Mauritius (October 1989)
  76. Mexico (January 1979, May 1990, August 1993, January 1999)
  77. Morocco (August 1985)
  78. Mozambique (September 1988)
  79. Netherlands (May 1985)
  80. New Zealand (November 1986)
  81. Nicaragua (March 1983, February 1996)
  82. Nigeria (February 1982, March 1998)
  83. Norway (June 1989)
  84. Pakistan (February 1980)
  85. Panama (March 1983)
  86. Papua New Guinea (May 1984, January 1995)
  87. Paraguay (May 1988)
  88. Peru (January 1985, May 1988)
  89. Philippines (February 1981, January 1995)
  90. Poland (June 1979, June 1983, June 1987, June 1991, August 1991, May 1995, May 1997, June 1999)
  91. Portugal (May 1982, March 1983, May 1994, 2000)
  92. Puerto Rico (October 1984)
  93. Romania (May 1999)
  94. Rwanda (September 1990)
  95. Saint Lucia (July 1986)
  96. San Marino (August 1982)
  97. Sao Tome and Principe (June 1992)
  98. Senegal (February 1992)
  99. Seychelles (November 1986)
  100. Singapore (November 1986)
  101. Slovakia (June 1995, May 1996)
  102. Slovenia (September 1999)
  103. Solomon Islands (May 1984)
  104. South Africa (September 1995)
  105. South Korea (May 1984, October 1989)
  106. Spain (October 1982, October 1984, August 1989, June 1993)
  107. Sri Lanka (January 1995)
  108. Sudan (February 1993)
  109. Swaziland (September 1988)
  110. Sweden (June 1989)
  111. Switzerland (June 1982, June 1984, September 1985)
  112. Syria (2001)
  113. Tanzania (September 1990)
  114. Thailand (May 1984)
  115. Togo (August 1985)
  116. Trinidad and Tobago (January 1985)
  117. Tunisia (April 1996)
  118. Turkey (November 1979)
  119. Uganda (February 1993)
  120. United States (September 1979, February 1980, May 1984, September 1987, August 1993, October 1995, January 1999)
  121. Uruguay (March 1987, May 1988)
  122. Venezuela (January 1985, February 1996)
  123. Zaire (May 1980, August 1985)
  124. Zambia (April 1989)
  125. Zimbabwe (September 1988)

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