"We Have Heard You"

I'll get back to the other major address of the papal visit, but first a quick word on how he was received. There were some 10,000 protesters when he went to Hyde Park for the vigil of the beatification. Usual suspects. Mostly these:

And some of these:

Isn't it weird how the burka-wearers and the condom-worshipers end up united?

And one unusual protester whom Fr. Z has more about.

But mostly, it was like this.

As I expected, the pre-trip yakkety-yak about how bad it would be was crazily wrong.  Damian Thompson, who was among those predicting doom, calls it a "personal triumph" for the Pope.

The PM spoke music to the Pope's ears in the departure ceremony at the airport:
we have heard you, he told the Pontiff, adding that “you have challenged the whole country to sit up and think.”
Bravo. The protests were about preventing the Pope from being heard. And where he is heard, he changes hearts and minds. Fr. Z's collecting those stories. Here's one:
My FIL went with us to the Mass in Glasgow and told me “I fell for him, today. I wasn’t really sure about him, but now I see that he’s a really good man, so humble and you can see he’s very shy and nice.
Lots of stories like that in the blogosphere, as always. The papers say one thing, and the actual man is another, so his "triumph" is a matter of seeing through the bluster and showing up to talk about Jesus.

Update: Fr. Tim takes a look at the press. News of the World now calls him "the people's pope."