More than 30,000 pilgrims enjoyed the sunny weather today as they gathered for Pope Benedict’s Wednesday audience. He centered his teaching on the example of Eusebius, the bishop of Palestine in the third century. The Pope shared Eusebius’ most powerful lesson for Christians—to see history as the revelation of God’s love for mankind.
Especially in today’s world of analysis and instant transmission of information, it can be easy to focus on what is new, what is sensational. However, Benedict XVI questioned this attitude saying, "Is it, the approach of one interested out of simple curiosity, perhaps seeking the scandalous and sensational at any cost?”
Instead, the Holy Father proposed that we should view the Church and its history the way Eusebius did. He saw the whole Church with an, “approach full of love and open to mystery of people….”
When the faithful approach the Church with love and faith then they can see, “in the history of the Church…the signs of God's love and of the great works of salvation He has achieved[.] If this is our approach, we cannot but be stimulated to a more coherent and generous response, to a more Christian witness of life."
Quoting "that eminent scholar of the Fathers," Cardinal Jean Danielou, the Pope said, "There is a hidden component in history. ... The mystery is that of God's works which, in time, constitute authentic reality hidden behind appearances. ... But God creates this history for man, he does not create it without him."
"After so many centuries," the Pope concluded, "even today Eusebius of Caesarea invites believers to feel wonder, to contemplate God's great works in history for the salvation of mankind. And, with the same amount of energy, he calls us to convert our lives. Indeed, faced with a God Who loved us so much, we cannot remain inert. The requirement of love is that all of life be oriented towards imitation of the Loved One."