Cheyenne, Wy – Wyoming Bishop David Ricken remembers Pope John Paul the second as compassionate and someone who tried to encourage reconciliation. Ricken says he had a special bond with the Pope after working in the Vatican for four years. The Pope later ordained him a Bishop. I have a beautiful picture of him laying his hands on my head during my ordination. So I have always felt a very special kinship towards him. Especially for his courage and his strong stands on things that are sometimes controversial. I think he has really shown Bishops and Priests how to be good Shepard's. How to be good pastors of their flock.
Ricken says losing the Pope is like losing a member of his family. He predicts that John Paul the second will eventually be named a Saint. Ricken says as a young man the Pope survived the Nazi's and later in life he survived a shooting. And yet, Ricken notes that the Pope always preached forgiveness and compassion. Ricken says he has taken that message further in recent years. He has modeled reconciliation .