-First and foremost, I thank God for giving us such a holy shepherd for the past 26+ years.
-Our Papa has finally gone to his eternal home. This very moment, we have every reason to believe that he is in the full presence of God.
-The Holy Father went home to God on exactly the right day: the Saturday (Our Lady's day) in the octave of Easter, on the vigil of Divine Mercy Sunday.
-After so much talk (mostly by the media) about whether the Holy Father would resign or what would happen if his mental faculties diminished, he was able to remained fully lucid until very shortly before his death.
-I'm grateful for the technology that allows us to see and communicate with our brothers and sisters in Christ from around the world and know that today we are all bound by a common joy and a common sorrow. I'm particularly grateful for the gift of the LJ Catholic community.
-Now that our Holy Father is no longer bound by his infirm body, it is possible (at least for me) to watch video clips of the earlier days of his papacy without being saddened by the knowledge of how much he is suffering in body and spirit for his inability to do the things he once could do. He is free now, and so I am able to see him as a younger, active man and simply rejoice in the energetic, charismatic Pope that he was.
-And I'm grateful for the final words that His Holiness communicated to his flock: "I am happy, and you should be as well. Let us pray together with joy.", and finally to the young people gathered in St. Peter's Square, "I have sought you. Now you have come to me, and I thank you."