.- Recalling his predecessor, Pope Paul VI, Pope John Paul II said today, during the feast of the Epiphany, that Christianity does not feel estranged from the world even if the world feels estranged from Christianity.
Speaking during the Angelus prayer, Pope John Paul said: âThe star, which guides the Magi to Christ, recalls the rich symbolism of the light, very present at Christmas. God is light and the Word become man is the âlight of the worldâ, the light that guides the peopleâs path: Lumen gentium.â
The Pope recalled Pope Paul VIâs pilgrimage to the Holy Land 40 years ago and the words of peace, which he proclaimed there on Jan. 6, 1964, in Bethlehem, in the Basilica of the Nativity.
ââWe gaze upon the world with great affection. If the world feels estranged from Christianity, Christianity does not feel estranged from the worldâ,â he said, quoting Paul VI. âAnd he added that the mission of Christianity for humanity is a mission of friendship, of understanding, of encouragementâ¦ a mission, namely, of salvation,â the 83-year-old pontiff summarized.
It is from this place, where the Prince of Peace was born, that Paul VI âexhorted the leaders of nations to work in ever closer collaboration âto establish peace in truth, in justice, in liberty and in fraternal loveâ,â he added. It is with great affection, the Pope said, that he has taken Paul VIâs words as his own on this feast of the Epiphany.
The Pope then invoked the intercession of Mary, whom he called âthe star of the pilgrim people of our time.â
âWith the maternal help of the Virgin, may each man meet Christ, Light of the truth, and may the world advance on the way to justice and peace,â he concluded.