The Archbishop of Toledo, Cardinal Antonio Canizares, said this week the main message Pope Benedict XVI has conveyed during his three years as Pontiff is that the fundamental purpose of human existence is the encounter with God.
“Benedict XVI, the Pope of reason and of what is essential, like Benedict of Nursia, has shown us in these three years that the fundamental purpose of our existence—indeed, the only one—is the search for God,” the cardinal said in an article published by the archdiocesan newspaper “Padre Nuestro.”
According to the cardinal, Benedict XVI knows by experience and by reason itself “that when a believer enters into a profound relationship with God, he cannot be content with living a mediocre life according to a minimalist ethic and a superficial religiosity.” This is the secret of the Pope, he said, the knowledge that the world needs the true revolution, which is “the revolution of God.”
Cardinal Canizares called Pope Benedict one of the most lucid and deepest thinkers of modern times. “He has just told us that ‘people today need to be called again to the ultimate purpose of their existence’,” the cardinal said.
This is the message the Pope gave during his visit to the United States, Cardinal Canizares said. “The encounter with the living God is the source of that hope that transforms lives and is spoken of in the Gospels,” he recalled from the Holy Father’s U.S. speeches. The Spanish cardinal noted that the Pope invited the faithful to recognize that “deep inside they have a profound thirst for God,” and that although it is easy “to be attracted by the almost unlimited possibilities that science and technology offer,” it is all an illusion, since without God “our lives are truly empty.”