Reflecting on the Gospel reading for this Sunday, the Holy Father
recalled a singular characteristic of the of the Gospel of Mark, the
so-called “Messianic Secret,” that is, Jesus’ command to his followers
not to reveal to others that he is the Messiah.
Pope Benedict explained: “Jesus insists on this ‘secret’ because the
success of his mission, our salvation, depends on it. He knows that to
free man from the power of sin, he must be sacrificed on the cross as
the true Paschal Lamb.”
“Jesus,” he said, “suffered and died on the cross out of love. In this
way, viewed properly, he gave meaning to our suffering, a meaning that
men and women of every age have understood and made their own,
experiencing profound serenity even in the bitterness of harsh physical
and moral trials.
“’This power of life in suffering’ is the theme that the Italian
bishops have chosen for their annual message on the occasion of today’s
Day for Life,” he continued, “Euthanasia is a false solution to the
drama of suffering, a solution that is not worthy of man. The real
answer cannot be, in fact, to give death, as 'gentle' as this may be,
but to testify to the love that helps us to face pain and agony in a
“We can be certain of this: no tear, neither of those who suffer, nor
of those close to them, will be lost before God," he added.
After the Marian prayer, Pope Benedict recalled the Feast of the
Presentation of Jesus in the Temple, which the Church celebrates
“My beloved predecessor John Paul II wished that this anniversary, on
which many consecrated persons make or renew their vows, be celebrated
as the Day of Consecrated Life,” he said. “Tomorrow afternoon, in St.
Peter’s Basilica, after the Holy Mass presided over by the Prefect of
the Congregation for the Institutes of Consecrated Life, I will meet
with consecrated men and women present in Rome. I invite all to thank
the Lord for the precious gift of these brothers and sisters, and to
ask him, through the intercession of the Virgin Mary, for many new
vocations, in the variety of charisms in which the Church is rich.”
.- Speaking before thousands of faithful gathered in St. Peter's Square
for the Angelus prayer today, Pope Benedict XVI rejected euthanasia as
a “false solution” to suffering.