As Pope Benedict XVI bid farewell to Austria today, he called on everyone to live Sunday’s in a Christian manner. Quoting a 20th century German bishop, Benedict exhorted people to “Give the soul its Sunday and give Sunday its soul.”
Speaking during his homily at St. Stephen's cathedral in the heart of Vienna, the Holy Father’s encouraged the faithful to enjoy true leisure. He also noted that while leisure is a good thing amid the mad rush of the modern world, it can also be a danger if it becomes just wasted time.
Instead, the Pope urged Christians to set aside Sundays to devote themselves to Christ's teachings and "create oases of selfless love in a world where so often only power and wealth seem to count for anything."
Rapping up his trip as both a pilgrim, and in some senses, as a missionary, the Pope called on Austrians to continue to build up their faith. "We need a relationship that sustains us, that gives direction and content to our lives."
As with the late John Paul II, whether or not Benedict XVI’s visit has been successful will only be clear with the passage of time.