Eternal Rest Grant Unto Him


From Paris comes the news that Cardinal Lustiger has passed away. Rather a nice obit in WaPo.
Originally named Aaron Lustiger, he was born Sept. 17, 1926, in Paris. His parents were Polish immigrants and nonpracticing Jews.
In what was said to be one of the few times he dealt publicly at length with his religious conversion, he told editors of an Israeli newspaper that his parents were upset. He said he told them, "I am not leaving you. I am not passing into the enemy camp. I'm becoming what I am. I am not stopping being a Jew -- just the opposite. I'm discovering a way of living it."

Cardinal Lustiger was elected in 1995 to the Academie Francaise, the group of 40 intellectuals founded in 1635 by Cardinal Richelieu and known as "the immortals."On May 31, he went to a meeting of the group to say goodbye. He told them: "I am going up there, to meet again with Cardinal Richelieu."

Update: Weigel reflects (he contrasts the Cardinal with one of his classmates at the Sorbonne, Pol Pot).

To meet Jean-Marie Lustiger was to meet a man of God: He was a wonderful human being—intelligent, caring, funny in a wry way—because he had been transformed by the power of God, in Christ, through the Holy Spirit. His great desire was that others might share in the gift that he had been given, the gift of faith. That gift led him to read situations in their true depth, often against the grain of the conventional wisdom. And this was another quality he shared with the late John Paul II—the quality of reading the dynamics of history in depth. Like the man who took a great risk in appointing him archbishop of Paris, Lustiger (who took no less a risk in accepting John Paul’s appointment) understood that the most dynamic force in history over time is neither politics nor economics but rather culture: what men and women honor, cherish, and worship; what men and women are willing to stake their lives on.

And at the heart of culture, Lustiger knew, is cult: the act of worship. Everyone worships; the only question is whether the object of our worship is worthy.

Update: Good round-up