Pope Benedict XVI has sent a message to the general assembly of the Italian Episcopal Conference reiterating the role of the bishops as educators and representatives of Christ on earth.
The Pope also told the bishops, who are meeting in Assisi this week, what he had said in Aosta, Italy over the summer: "If our fundamental relationship with God is not living, if it is not lived, then none of our other relationships can take their correct form. If God is absent, we lack the compass ... to show us the path, the direction we must follow.
“We must bring the truth of God back into the world, make Him known, make Him present.”
The Holy Father then called upon the bishops to “become living adoration, a gift that changes the world and restores it to God.”
Pope Benedict also touched on problems of division in Southern Italy as well as the new Italian edition of funeral rites, both of which are topics present on the Conference’s agenda.