Loading
Pope Benedict gives thanks for pilgrimage to Holy Land
Pope Benedict gives thanks for pilgrimage to Holy Land

.- On a warm spring day, Pope Benedict XVI met with tens of thousands of pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square Sunday to pray the Regina Coeli and to reflect on his recent visit to the Holy Land.

The Pope began by thanking the Lord, the civil and religious authorities in the Holy Land and all those “who accompanied and supported me in their prayer” for his recently concluded pilgrimage to the region. He said, “This land, symbol of God’s love for his people and for the whole of humanity, is also a symbol of freedom and peace as God wills it for every one of his children.”

“However, yesterday’s and today’s history show that this land has become a symbol of the opposite, of divisions and never-ending conflicts among brothers,” he continued. “The Holy Land has itself become almost a metaphor of revelation a “Fifth Gospel”, as some have called it, which by virtue of its history can be considered a microcosm that sums up humanity’s tiring journey towards the Kingdom of justice, love and peace.”

In the last part of his reflection the Holy Father focused on praying for the civilians caught up in fighting in Sri Lanka. For the past several weeks he military has been on the offensive against Tamil rebels in the northern part of the country. Thousands of people have been caught in the crossfire.

Today the Sri Lankan government announced that all the displaced people had reached safe areas and that the 25-year war against the Tamil Tigers has ended in victory.

“We cannot end this Marian prayer without turning our thoughts to Sri Lanka, to express our affection and spiritual closeness to the civilians caught in the combat zone, in the north of the country; thousands of children, women and elderly who lost years of life and hope to the war,” the Pontiff said. “And so I call on the combatants to facilitate their evacuation, joining my voice to that of the United Nations Security Council which just a few days ago demanded guarantees for their safety and security.”

“I call on humanitarian organizations, including Catholic organizations, to leave no stone unturned in their effort to bring urgent food and medical aid to the refugees.”

“I entrust this dear country to the maternal protection of Our Lady of Madhu, beloved and venerated by all Sri Lankans,” Pope Benedict concluded. “I raise my prayers to the Lord that he may bring closer the day of reconciliation and peace.”

After the Marian prayer, the Pope addressed a few words to English-speaking pilgrims:

“I warmly greet all the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors present for this Regina Coeli prayer. In today’s Gospel Jesus invites his disciples to remain in his love by their love for one another. These words of the Risen Lord have a special resonance for me as I reflect on my recent pilgrimage to the Holy Land. I ask all of you to join me in praying that the Christians of the Middle East will be strengthened in their witness to Christ’s victory and to the reconciling power of his love. Through the prayers of Mary, Queen of Peace, may the Christians of the Holy Land, in cooperation with their Jewish and Muslim neighbors, and all people of good will, work in harmony to build a future of justice and peace in those lands. Upon them, and upon all of you, I invoke an abundance of Easter joy in Christ our Savior.


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
16

Liturgical Calendar

April 16, 2014

Wednesday of Holy Week

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 26:14-25

Gospel
Date
04/16/14
04/14/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Is 50:4-9a
Gospel:: Mt 26:14-25

Homily of the Day

Mt 26:14-25

Homily
Date
04/16/14
04/14/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: