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Archbishop Pell ranks Reagan on a par with Churchill

In his weekly column in the Sunday Telegraph, Cardinal Pell paid tribute to former US President Ronald Reagan placing him in the same class as Winston Churchill.

The Cardinal observed: " Reagan was no intellectual, not interested in administrative detail. Insulted and derided by most of the experts, he had a few central convictions, courage, and an extraordinary capacity for reaching ordinary people. He possessed genuine decency and persistent good humour. On great occasions he could reach an eloquence unmatched by anyone since Churchill, even J.F. Kennedy."

He continued: "Some debate today who was the most important figure in [the defeat of communism] Reagan or Pope John Paul II or Margaret Thatcher; or even Gorbachev with his ineptitude and decency or Lech Walesa, the Polish trade union leader? Probably Reagan should have pride of position, but none of this group could have done it alone."

"What was rare and exceptional was that the U.S.A., Britain and the Catholic Church had leaders with the convictions and courage to attempt to knock down the Evil Empire, when they were surrounded by experts and fellow leaders who believed any such attempt was unwise and bound to fail. Such an unusual alliance was not coincidental, but Providential."

Cardinal Pell ended saying, "I watched Reagan's funeral on T.V. as I watched Churchill's. All of us owe them a lot."

Archdiocese of Sydney website – Ronald Reagan

15 Jun 2004