From the 12/16 Newsweek :
Pope John Paul II, 84
No pope since Peter had loomed so large. His travels to 129 countries over 26 years covered the equivalent of three times the distance between the Earth and the moon. He was seen in person by more people than any other leader, spiritual or secular, in history; his Vatican funeral last April drew a total of 3 million mourners. Having grown up in Poland—he was the first non-Italian pope in more than 400 years—Karol Wojtyla experienced both the Nazi occupation and Soviet domination. He never forgot the feeling of "humiliation at the hands of evil," and never hesitated to speak out about the need for freedom, morality and justice. In 1979, his first visit to Poland as pope inspired the birth of the Solidarity movement, which toppled the communist regime and helped trigger the collapse of the Soviet empire and the end of the cold war. John Paul was a doctrinal conservative, holding the line on birth control, abortion and women's roles in the church, but he was also the first pope in history to visit both a synagogue and a mosque, and he reached out to the Third World in a way none of his predecessors had. His was a truly revolutionary pontificate—and he looms every bit as large in death as he did in life.
Nice to see a relatively positive appreciation of JP II, eh?