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Cliff McKenzie, Editor

GROUND ZERO PLUS 1298 DAY--New York, NY, Saturday, April 2, 2005--A modern-day king is on his death bed. Long live the king!

In the 21st Century, one would think that democracy was the single-most important political and social doctrine in the history of human kind.

Karol Wojtyla, Archbishop of Krakow, Poland, the 264th Pope, was the youngest Pope, at 58, elected in 132 years (pictured here in 2003)

However, when you look at the power, structure and impact of the position of the Catholic Pope, there is a strong case to be made for the preservation of a "kingdom," a structure where one person rules over vast numbers and only answers to a "higher authority."

That's certainly the case of the Catholic Church, and especially symbolized by the approaching death of one of its most powerful and popular "kings," Pope John Paul II.

Elected in October 1978, the Pope's 27-year reign as the intercessionary between God and humanity, has been historic.

He "rules" over 1.06 billion people, an incredible 33 percent of the world's population.

But as a king, he has one overriding objective that elevates him to the position of Global Sentinel of Vigilance over his domain. That goal is the safety, happiness and joy of the Children's Children's Children.

In examining the role of any Sentinel of Vigilance, whether it be the parents of a family, a friend, a loved one, a relative, three ingredients are necessary. One is Courage, the other Conviction, and the final, Right Actions that benefit the Children's Children's Children.

One might have the first two qualities of Sentinel Leadership and yet make selfish, self-centered decisions in life that lead to the degradation of the children. When certain needs dominate others--such as self satisfaction--then the children will suffer, for what one justifies as "good" may be "bad" for them.

An example is the hard-working father who believes that unless he spends the bulk of his time working to pay the rent and put food on the table that the children will suffer. Carrying this thought, he is "too busy" to talk to the kids, "too busy" to engage in their deepest emotional needs, "too busy" to nurture their inner evolution.

Parents who are too busy lose sight of the real needs of children

In the end, a chasm exists. The child, thirsty for love and affection, instead receives clothes, a nice home, nice things--but, the warmth of a father's arms or the joy of snuggling with him is lost in the sparkle and dazzle of "things."

Of course, the same applies to mothers. Mothers become so "busy" doing "things" that they lose sight of the real needs of a child. Unity between the deepest emotional links of parent and child is as vital as mother's milk.

There are the cruel parents also. Those who abuse a child physically or emotionally, violate all the rules of Vigilance.

Our most lofty political leaders hail themselves as great leaders, and promote the fact they are making decisios that are good for the country, but, in the final analysis, they do not promote each and every program they champion as being the right thing for the Children and the Children's Children's Children.

Instead, they appeal mostly to the "voters" and their "selfish" needs, often perverting the needs of the future to feed the lust of the present.

Pope John Paul II symbolizes the role of the shepherd.

His flock is not the adults walking the earth, but instead the children.

Vigilance Vigil at St. Peter's

In almost every aspect of public life, the Pope reaches out his umbrella to cover the children from the harsh rays of life's brutality.

So, as the Pope reaches the deparating of earth for other places, he will leave us a legacy of Vigilance worthy of note. His legacy will indeed be a reminder that kings aren't bad. When the ruler of the land has one single purpose--to protect the future of the children--to maximize their faith and hopes--then such a king cannot be so bad.

Let us hope the next Pope sees through the eyes of a child.



Go To April Story: "The Holy Tube?"



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