He who was born of the Virgin Mary, the so-called son of the carpenter, the Son of the living God, as Peter confessed, came to make all of us “a kingdom of priests.”
The Second Vatican Council has reminded us of the mystery of this power, and of the fact that the mission of Christ—Priest, Teaching Prophet, King—continues in the Church. Everyone, the whole people of God has a part in this threefold mission. Perhaps in the past, we put the triple crown on the head of the Pope to express by such a symbol that the whole hierarchical order of the Church of Christ, all of Christ’s “sacred power” exercised in the Church, is nothing else but service, service that has one goal alone: that the whole People of God take part in this threefold mission of Christ, and remain always under the Lord’s power. His power comes not from the powers of this world, but from the heavenly Father and from the mystery of the Cross and of the Resurrection.
The absolute power of the Lord is even sweet and gentle. So, it answers all the depths of man; it answers his highest aspirations of intellect, of will, of heart. His power does not speak with a language of force, but it expresses itself in charity and in truth.
Homily at the beginning of the ministry of John Paul II as the Roman Pontiff, 1978
The image of the young John Paul as a student at the Angelicum, 1947