The Catholic News Agency has excerpts from Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput's tribute to Judge John Roll, who was gunned down on Saturday in Tucson:
“John Roll was, finally, a man of unusual personal graciousness,” [Chaput] remarks. “Despite their political differences, Judge Roll and Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, a Democrat, had a cordial relationship of mutual respect.”
Precisely because of their differences, the archbishop says, Judge Roll tried to greet Giffords at her local appearances whenever he could.
“On the morning of his death, Judge Roll went to Mass, and at 9:55 a.m. [...] left his house to just 'drop in' on Giffords’ public gathering as a courtesy, to say hello.”
“He never came home.”
“This life passes,” Archbishop Chaput says in his concluding remarks. “Eternity is forever. We need to act in this world accordingly, with lives of Christian service.”
“Maureen and John Roll shared a life of quiet, powerful, authentic Catholic witness. Please keep them both, and the entire Roll family, in your prayers.”
Roll was appointed a District Court judge by President George H.W. in 1991 and confirmed by the Senate that year. The Catholic News Agency reports that Roll would have celebrated his 41st wedding anniversary with his wife later this month, and he is survived by three sons and five grandchildren. R.I.P.