.- Christians shouldnât be afraid to call upon the name of Jesus Christ for help at all stages of their lives, Pope Benedict XVI said in his Sunday Angelus address on Aug. 14.
âDear friends, we too are called to grow in faith, to reach out and to receive freely the gift of God, to trust in Jesus and cry out, âGive us the faith, help us find our wayâ,â the Pope told pilgrims gathered at his summer residence at Castel Gandolfo, 15 miles south of Rome.
Pope Benedict said that this trust in Christ was personified in todayâs Gospel reading in which a pagan Canaanite woman, despite not being Jewish, beseeched Jesus to cure her daughter who was possessed by a demon.
God responds to such a faithful cry ânot as some faceless and nameless abstractâ but as âa person who wants to enter into a relationship of deep love with us,â with that person being Jesus Christ himself.
âFaith opens us to know and accept the true identity of Jesus, its novelty and uniqueness, his Word as a source of life, to live a personal relationship with Him,â said the Pope.
This acceptance of Jesus requires a daily âexperience of conversionâ where âevery day we feed our faithâ by âlistening to the Word of God, with the celebration of the Sacraments, with personal prayer as a âcryâ to Him and with charity towards our neighbor.â
After praying the Angelus with pilgrims, the Pope asked all present to pray for the success of World Youth Day, which begins this Tuesday in Madrid. In particular he welcomed Cardinal Jaime Ortega Alamino of Havana who is leading a group of young pilgrims from Cuba to WYD for the first time ever.
Finally, the Pope reminded pilgrims that Sunday marks the 70th anniversary of the martyrdom of St. Maximilian Kolbe, the Polish priest executed in the Nazi camp at Auschwitz.
âHis heroic love is a shining example of successful presence of God in the human drama of hatred, suffering and death.â