Ted Kennedy is dead. Called “the Lion of the Senate” for his extraordinary legislative accomplishments, his own words in eulogy for his brother Robert aptly summarize Ted Kennedy’s own legacy as “a good and decent man who need not be idealized or enlarged in death beyond what he was in life. . . .”
And what was he in life? A man of privilege whose Catholic faith prompted him to pursue the calling of Francis to look first to the needs of the poor. A man of faith, whose last courageous days of suffering exemplified Pope John Paul II’s invitation to cross the threshold, not in fear, but with hope.
Ted Kennedy’s faith also called upon the Nicene Creed to remember that despite our political differences, we remain "one holy catholic and apostolic Church."
For too long in America, people of good will sharing the Catholic faith have been divided. We have been told, or we have convinced ourselves, that unless there is perfect agreement on every issue, there can be no friendship. This is mistaken.
Pope Benedict XVI wrote recently in Caritas in Veritate: