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Cross Wires: Scotland on eve of historic Papal visit

Much has been said about the Papal visit to Scotland, not all of it favourable, warranted or even for that matter accurate, but all that has been said and done until this point becomes yesterday’s news tomorrow

Efforts to undermine the magnitude of this historic event, intentional or otherwise, leave a sour taste, especially coverage in today’s Independent newspaper (link below).

Such efforts, showing the dark face of anti-Catholicism in our society in spite of the hand of friendship extended by the Queen and her Government to the Holy Father, have ultimately failed, however, because tonight Scotland awaits Pope Benedict’s arrival. All that has been said and done until this point becomes yesterday’s news tomorrow.

Pope Benedict XVI’s arrival is an occasion that Prime Minister David Cameron has said is ‘incredibly important and historic.’

At his general audience today in Rome Pope Benedict XVI invoked God’s ‘abundant blessings’ upon all the English-speaking visitors present ‘especially the pilgrim groups from England and Scotland.’ One wonders if that is a Saltire Mgr Georg Ganswein, the Pope’s personal secretary, is waving at the end of the general audience (see photo).

The only important questions to think on now are: what will the Holy Father say while on our shores, what will he do, what will we remember? The legacy of this historic visit has yet to be written and that task must not be left to the ‘naysayers’.

The day before Pope Benedict XVI arrives in Scotland and Glasgow and Edinburgh have been hives of activity.

On site at Bellahouston Park in Glasgow the final preparations are being made for the arrival of tens of thousands of pilgrims and every thought has been given to the quality of the experience they will have on the day before, during and after the arrival of Pope Benedict XVI. The one aspect out with event planners’ control is the weather but Cross Wires is sure Scots won’t let even the odd shower put a dampener on the day.

In Edinburgh the hard work continues for the State reception of the Holy Father and the St Ninian’s Day parade. Exciting news came today on two special guests joining the 800 school children, 1000 pipers and historic characters tomorrow morning in Edinburgh ahead of Pope Benedict’s procession through the capital.

World champion boxer Ricky Burns will be carrying the Saltire and World Highland dancing champion Anthea Bundy will carry the Vatican flag in the parade. Both are said to be inspired by their Faith to strive for excellence in their field and both treasure their family Rosaries.

To pilgrims from throughout Scotland and beyond, Cross Wires wishes you a safe, uplifting and spiritual Papal pilgrimage in the days ahead. Being present to see the Holy Father, listening carefully to his message and making up our own minds about the visit is a golden opportunity for all generations and faiths. Truly we are blessed.

Link to The Independent coverage (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/catholic-britain-rejoices-but-abuse-overshadows-popes-first-state-visit-2079552.html)

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