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Read what mourners around the world have to say about the late Pope John Paul II 
John Paul II

(CNN) -- asked its readers to share their views on the death of Pope John Paul II, who died Saturday. Here is a sampling from thousands of responses, some of which have been edited.

John Paul II was a great man who showed courage and good fortune to a lot of people. Truly one of nature's gentlemen is gone. Rest in peace John Paul II, you will be sadly missed.
Keith King; Perth, Australia

I shed many tears through the service, and the respect and honor shown by the crowd in the St. Peter's Square and the dignitaries from all around our beautiful world made me realize that in our pope's death his message was heard: "That peace can be achieved even for a brief flicker of the candle in the breath of the act that is humanity." Rest in peace Pope John Paul II, may God grant you the serenity and the mercy that you most deserve. The world will always miss you, and yet we will always be joyous for what you did for humanity as a whole, in life as in your passing. Goodbye, pope.
Petar Vodogaz; Sydney, Australia

The world has lost a great man. We are saddened by your passing but we also feel happy for you as you have now peacefully return to be beside God, whom you have so selflessly and faithfully served all your life. You will always be in our heart. Ciao Papa.
Linda P.; Brisbane, Australia

The late Pope John Paul II is a great religious leader of the modern history. So far, there is not a single Christian leader that is able to win the hearts and minds of the world except the late pope. Many have failed while the late pope has succeeded. The main reason for the failure of many Christian leaders is that they have this superior attitude that they are the truth and they are the righteous without any regard for the sensitivity of other religions, cultures and countries. The late pope displayed holiness, mercy, compassion, tolerance and understanding to other religious leaders of different countries and with that, he won their hearts and minds. It is so simple and yet so profound.
Desmond; Bendigo, Australia

John Paul II was the greatest man ever. I really respected him. He helped so many people in this world, and furthermore, he forgave the man who had shot him. This kind of act is very, very amazing. May the man rest in peace.
Olivia; Sydney, Australia

Pope John Paul II was the "people's pope." He embraced everyone and was respected by all people from different lands and religions, the rich and the poor. Most of all he was considered the "modern savior" to his beloved homeland and the Polish people. The Poles were very proud of the moment in 1978 when Karol Jozef Wojtyla was elected pope. This somehow gave the Polish people much hope for freedom, having been oppressed under the communist regime for so long. This will be a moment in time that will never be forgotten by the Poles. He had great vision for his homeland and expressed a wish to the Polish people on his visit in 1979. My parents are Polish, and I speak on behalf of both of them as they are elderly and in ill health. Pride in their homeland has never diminished, and they were overwhelmed when Poland was free once again. Pope John Paul II will never be forgotten [nor] his love of all people. [He was] a man of great vision and leadership. ...
Danni Rydzewski; Sydney, Australia

Our family is deeply saddened by the death of our holy father. We are practicing Catholics in a little country town in New Zealand and everyone here was sad to hear of a great loss, not only to the church, but to the world.
Mutu family; Northland, New Zealand

A servant of God as we all should live. He has given the world an example of interior life and struggle even in the midst of extreme suffering. [In] a world where giving up of life is almost accepted and abuse of the rights of the innocent is considered part of the lifestyle and freedom. May we all live up [to] his spirit but above all to the spirit of the one he served: Jesus Christ our lord and God, with our feet on the earth and our gaze in heaven. May God accept his soul in heaven and protect his church.
Kittoli; Brisbane, Australia

He represents the true Christian values. If we had enough people like him, the world would be paradise.
Francis; Auckland, New Zealand

I, like so many, have never had the chance to meet the pope. But I still feel a closeness to him. He was a great man and did so much to bring about peace in this world and abolish communism in certain countries, starting with his home country of Poland. For him to have forgiven the man who tried to assassinate him in 1981 was certainly a very courageous move. There are very few people who would have done something like that. I am praying to him for guidance in my life and also my family's. The Catholic community has most definitely lost a great shepherd but I'm sure he is still going to be looking out for us.
Esther; Sydney, Australia

I am an atheist, but this was a man that despite ... of his religious convictions (and whether you agreed with them or not) strove to bring the world peace. I remember as an 11- or 12-year-old that he came to be and I remember that he and Lech Walesa were so powerfully in the news for trying to make a country better. I remember this as a young child and one who was not brought up in this faith. His standing, his bearing, his grace in his decline and his utter faith in humanity are an inspiration to all, and I wish that at the end of their serving term, all of our world leaders could be as widely respected and so roundly loved as this man was. May his God permit him an eternity fitting that that he accomplished on Earth.
Sharon; Perth, Australia

We mourn the loss of a great spiritual leader Pope John Paul II and value his contribution to the Catholic Church, the broader Christian community and complex issues of social change and conscience. His life and death encourages us all to take leadership in the face of suffering. The tragic loss of lives and continuing violence in Sudan and Iraq, the plight of millions living in poverty or with HIV and AIDS, reveals a daily suffering to which we must all respond with active compassion and, like John Paul II, give voice to those without a voice to be heard. Here in Australia, where we tend to shy away from rhetoric and idealism in favor of practical generosity and action (a great virtue in itself), we should not forget the contribution of those great spiritual values as, above all, they remind us of our critical part in something larger than ourselves. Regardless of religion or belief, the death of John Paul II should encourage us all to take leadership in the face of suffering.
Daniel Ang; Sydney, Australia

Youth today are a cynical bunch, but when my daughter, who is barely out of her teens, learned that the pope met with and forgave Mehmet Ali Agca [his would-be assassin] she commented, "he was truly a good man." I cannot think of a better way to describe him.
Enrique Olmos; Sydney, Australia

He was a true sign of God's presence in the world. His was a life that gave testimony to the truth -- to what he believed in and brought others to the same truth, not through force or intimidation but by charity and witnessing. That is the kind of example the world needs. The world cannot be united by asserting our differences, be it religious, political, racial or cultural. The only way is to transcend individual differences, not looking so much at our idiosyncrasies but on what makes us the same ... that we are all children of God. Muslim, Jew, Buddhist, Christian, Hindu -- we all have one origin. The Holy Father testified to this.
Jesus Nicodemus Lariosa; Brisbane, Australia

I had always loved Pope John Paul II. His death though has had a profound effect on me. His heroism, love, faith and most of all his strength to find good in all and belief in mankind has touched me deeply. His death has made me realize that forgiveness of those who wrong you will set you free. May Pope John Paul II not only be remembered as a great man but may his life show us what love, faith, and life really means. I know that my life has changed spiritually because of him. I will not only be a more loving person to my family, I will love all those around me. I promise to give a smile to a stranger, help those who need it and most of all thank God that Pope John Paul II's new life has given me a new life as well.
Cathy; Thomastown, Australia

Youth today are a cynical bunch, but when my daughter, who is barely out of her teens, learned that the pope met with and forgave Mehmet Ali Agca she commented, "He was truly a good man." I can not think of a better way to describe him.
Enrique Olmos; Sydney, Australia

John Paul II was truly an angel sent to us from God! I remember back to when I was only 5 years old when the pope visited my home town of Adelaide in December 1986. I was raised up on my father's shoulders so that I could have a glimpse of the man that was sculpting our world. As he passed through the masses of people in his "popemobile," I waved a Polish flag and thanked God for giving us such an inspirational leader -- a moment in which I will treasure forever! Being of Polish descent, I couldn't help but be saddened by his passing, he gave hope, freedom and faith to many Polish people (including my grandparents) at a time of great despair. And for that he will always be remembered in our hearts as our savior! Peace be with you, father; may God shine his light down upon you, amen.
Lauren Makowski; Adelaide, Australia

I am very saddened to hear of the passing of Pope John Paul II. I have been following the news headlines and live coverage on television and am praying that he has a long and happy eternal life with God and Jesus. The world has truly lost a man that can never be replaced, and he has made such an impact on the world that it would be foolish not to make him a saint.
Carmela Spagnolo; Melbourne, Australia

I am 26 years old and in the year of my birth, John Paul II became pope. I grew up within the shadow of John Paul's successful if somewhat controversial leadership. He is the only pope I have ever known, and it is the same for all of my generation. I will greatly miss John Paul II, for he showed the world that we were all human, all created equal regardless of race, color, religion. I wish I had met him sometime in my life. But I felt as if I had a father always watching out for me. ... His legacy will live on in my generation and we have all lost a wonderful, caring, compassionate man. I will miss John Paul II.
Petar Vodogaz; Sydney, Australia

This world has lost a great man. You have served God selflessly and faithfully all your life. May you now rest in peace beside him. You will always be in our heart. Goodbye.
Linda; Australia

As a young man, I was profoundly impacted by the words and actions of Pope John Paul II. He constantly proclaimed the person of Jesus, which is exactly what we as young people today need to hear. I am extremely sad at his death, yet I also feel a profound sense of pride in what he has achieved, because he was our pope.
Nick Seselja; Canberra, Australia

All manner of people were drawn to him. Children were not afraid of him and were drawn to his most gentle loving nature. It is testament to his caring for all the people in the world [that] they have cried openly for a truly great man and father to them all.
Teresa Tomczyk; Westmead, Australia

John Paul II was one of the most influential figures of the 20th century, and he practiced what he preached. Love, humility and compassion for those less fortunate than ourselves was his modus operandi and I am certain he has been welcomed into the embrace of the Father.
Kevin Harrison; Hamilton, New Zealand

In the gospel we read Jesus said, "Do not be afraid for I am with you even until the end of times." John Paul II always said, "Do not be afraid." Thank you John Paul for letting us know not to be afraid, for through your pontificate we know Jesus is truly still with us. He came to Australia twice and I went to see him. As a human he was a lively, happy man and as the Vicar of Christ he was a holy man that knew and did the will of God. Thank you God for Karol Jozef Wojtyla.
Pat Bayliss; Melbourne, Australia

He was a great man, the world is poorer without him. He made the Church a world religion, not an Italian one.
Kroehss P.; Perth, Australia

Heaven is rejoicing while we are in mourning. In this John Paul II followed Jesus, too. I am very sad this day.
Chris John; Melbourne, Australia

I cry tears of sorrow for the loss of an incredibly gifted leader. I cry tears of gratitude for having lived to witness our human angel in action. May all those mourning for him embrace his spirit, morals and faith and continue to live by his example. Our Holy Father, Pope John Paul II, God bless you, keep you and shine His light on you. You have enriched so many souls, inspired so many lives and softened so many struggles. Thank you for your goodness, ethics and honor. Rest in heavenly peace with our teacher.
Kate Dzidzic; Melbourne, Australia

A man that mirrors all of mankind. He saw the ugly, beautiful, solemn, and weary. A pope like no other. Why you ask? Because he was real. May you fly free in God's love, dear man.
Niki Stewart; Queensland, Australia

On behalf of the Christians in Papua New Guinea, we would like to thank Pope John Paul II as being the leader of the Catholic Church and as the head of the Vatican, who has inspired a lot of Christians to stand up against corruption in the government, our family lives, and place of work. Your strength and perseverance is strength to us all. You brought the human race together and we know that you are now with the Lord.
Edward Minnis; Tabubil, Papua New Guinea

Pope John Paul II touched all of mankind. He inspired the Catholics through his devotion, other Christian denominations through his sentiments of unity, the Jews through his reconciliation and the bereaved/displaced/suffering through his humility.
Len Elikhis; Melbourne, Australia

I am by no means religious, however the death of the pope still saddens me. Whether you believe or not, you cannot deny that this man has left a legacy that has affected the whole world in one way or another. An inspiration to do what you believe in for everyone!
Yikidee; Gold Coast, Australia

It's like losing a family member. Truly one of the greatest persons of the last 100 years. From the fall of communism to his tireless love and work for the poor he truly will do down in history as John Paul The Great.
Kris; Brisbane, Australia

Pope John Paul II was a strong man who put religion into the world's dining room once again. More than a mere "figurehead," he worked for peace and against communism. Those who question his stance on contraception need to realize there must be a moral stance somewhere to curb promiscuity. The church is responsible for morality, government is responsible when people stray from this.
Adam Leibrandt; Cabramatta, Australia

I am not the most of religious of people but I was deeply saddened by this tragic event. I believe the pope was an inspiration to all human kind for he was so pure; he had only love to give, something, sadly, you won't find in today's world. He struggled to make the world a better place even on his deathbed, and I applaud him and his life, for he was one of a kind, a beauty. He is off in a better place now and we are grateful for that, for his legacy has left a positive mark around the world. Rest in peace.
Cute Mutambara; Canberra, Australia

An incredible man who totally devoted his life to people. A modest, true shepherd who was like a light in the darkness in this rough world. He will never be forgotten by any of us, small, oppressed and suffering people.
Zdenek Busek; Melbourne, Australia

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