.- Pope Benedict XVI delivered a stirring message from the window of his apartment in the Vatican Palace above a packed St. Peterâs Square on Sunday. Before reciting the Angelus, he welcomed the New Year with an invitation to hope and a reminder that the faithful have a responsibility to collaborate with God.
The Pope began by saying that despite problems in the Church, the world and our family lives, we can always trust in God to be our hope, a hope that does not rely on âimprobable prognosticationsâ or âeconomic forecasts.â This is also not a hope in a âgeneric religiosity, or in a fatalism feigned as faith.â
âWe trust in the God that revealed completely and definitively in Jesus Christ His will to be with man, to share his story, to guide us all to His kingdom of love and life,â continued the Holy Father.
The Pontiff referred to the three biblical readings from Sundayâs Eucharistic liturgy as being âof extraordinary wealthâ in illuminating this revelation. âThese texts,â he explained, âaffirm that God is not only creator of the universe â an aspect also in common to other religions â but that He is the Fatherâ¦ .â
Through these readings, Benedict XVI said, we know that God chose us as His adopted children, first among creation, and even made himself man to live among us, thus, making âall of the fullness of divinityâ bodily present.
The true reason for us to have hope, continued the Pope, is âthe meaning given to history because it is 'inhabited' by the Wisdom of God.â
However, he noted, this âdivine designâ does not come about on its own, but is a âproject of love,â which generates and asks for freedom.
âEach man and woman is responsible for taking Him in to their own lives, day by day.â
Thus, said the Pope, the value of the year 2010 for us is contingent on our ability to âcollaborate with the grace of God,â according to our individual responsibilities.
The Pontiff concluded by using the example of the Virgin Mary as a spiritual model, because when she gave her consent the Son of God was conceived.
âEach time the Lord wants to take a step ahead, together with us, towards the 'promised land,' he calls first to our hearts, (and) waits for â¦ our âyesâ, in the big and the small choices.â
After the Angelus, the Benedict XVI greeted all the English-speakers in the crowd, calling them to be âwitnesses to the light that enlightens the whole of creationâ like John the Baptist in Sundayâs Gospel.