Loading
Pope reflects on the power of love
By Matthew A. Rarey
Pope Benedict XVI. Credit: Mazur / catholicchurch.org.uk.
Pope Benedict XVI. Credit: Mazur / catholicchurch.org.uk.

.- Pope Benedict XVI’s Nov. 4 Angelus address reflected on the Sunday Mass reading from St. Mark’s Gospel about the “greatest of all commandments,” giving special attention to the commandment to love God and neighbor.

“Jesus did not invent one nor the other, but revealed that they are, after all, a single commandment,” the Holy Father said with outstretched arms as he stood at his study window overlooking St. Peter’s Square.

St. Peter’s Square was unusually packed with pilgrims and visitors—extraordinary both because of the sheer number of people, estimated to be as many as 50,000, and because of the dismal weather. Mist turned into rain as the Pope’s address ended with pealing bells and the blast of a particularly boisterous pilgrim’s air horn.

The Pope reflected on the nature of love, saying one must love with words and witness. He said that love begins not as a command but a gift from God. This gift allows people to see God as he does—with unconditional love—and this in turn should encourage everyone to view one another the same way.

“If the love of God has planted deep roots in a person, then he is able to love even those who do not deserve it, as does God toward us,” Pope Benedict said.

He likened God’s love to the unconditional love parents show their children, however undeserved.

Even if love is undeserved and rejected, it does not go unrewarded, the Pope explained. Love builds upon love and brings one ever closer to the source of love, God. Opening one’s heart toward others also means opening oneself to knowing God, “to feel that he is there and is good.”

Pope Benedict said that having loving eyes allows one to see God ever clearer so that one wants only what is good, never bad.

The Pope ended the formal part of his Angelus address by discussing the power of the Eucharist. He said this sacrament works miracles through helping people to accept the gift of love and to realize the blessings of the greatest commandment to love God and neighbor.

He said the Eucharist is the embodiment of this greatest commandment.

In the Eucharist, he said, Jesus “gifts us this twofold love, gifting himself, because, nourished by this bread, we love one another as he has loved us.”

After the Pope’s Angelus remarks, he recognized several groups of pilgrims from different countries in their native tongues. The pilgrims responded with varying levels of expression reflecting their cultures. Pilgrims from Latin countries tended to wave large banners and respond with jubilant exultation. Polish pilgrims, who are always well represented at the Angelus address, waved a banner and cheered with the gusto of a people whose faith and patriotic identity are so inseparable.

But happy applause and a few polite cheers came from the country last to be recognized.

“It’s representative of English restraint,” said Charles Cole, the assistant director of music at London’s Brompton Oratory, who is preparing an EWTN special for next year about achieving beauty through music. He was in Rome in his capacity as director of music at St. Philip’s School in London.

The boys were “very excited hearing our name mentioned,” said the school’s headmaster Harry Briggs-Davison. “We didn’t expect that.”

Every three years his school takes a Rome pilgrimage. One of the highlights of their three-day trip was yesterday’s audience with Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke, Prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, who held a question-and-answer with the 40 boys dressed in their school’s sky-blue blazers.

“I asked him what the best part was about being a cardinal,” James Garadnon, a smiling blond-haired 11-year-old said with a gentle voice. “He paused, thought a moment, and said it was serving the Holy Father.”

Tags: Angelus


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic
Apr
24

Liturgical Calendar

April 24, 2014

Thursday within the Octave of Easter

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Lk 24:35-48

Gospel
Date
04/24/14
04/23/14
04/22/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Acts 3:11-26
Gospel:: Lk 24:35-48

Saint of the Day

Easter Sunday »

Saint
Date
04/24/14
04/22/14

Homily of the Day

Lk 24:35-48

Homily
Date
04/24/14
04/23/14
04/22/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: