.- Sunday morning, thousands of pilgrims gathered in St. Peter's Square to see Pope John Paul who celebrated his second Sunday Angelus since leaving the Gemelli hospital. The crowd erupted in cheers when the Pope, who had spent 10-days in the hospital for flu-related problems, read a brief message before the Angelus prayers and greeted several groups, including candid remarks, following the Marian prayer.
"The spiritual exercises in which I took part,â he said, âtogether with many of my collaborators in the Roman Curia, concluded yesterday with a solemn Eucharistic celebration, following by Adoration.â
The Eucharist is the source from which communion between the members of the mystical body of Christ draws ever new vigor."
"In this perspective," he continued, "the special duty entrusted to Peter and his successors acquires full confirmation; the Petrine ministry is essentially serving the unity of the Church.â
'You are Peter and upon this rock I will build my Church'. Other comforting words of the Lord's echo this promise of His: 'And I have prayed for you (Simon Peter) that your faith may not fail; and when you have turned again, strengthen your brethren'."
"'Feed my lambs... Tend my sheep', the Pope quoted from scripture. âThis invitation of Jesus' is especially alive in my soul when I contemplate the Eucharistic mystery. I entrust all the People of God to Him, the Good Shepherd, in this Lenten walk towards Easter. Let us invoke the support of Mary, Mother of the Church, with the customary Angelus prayer."
Following the time of prayer, the Pope greeted all the faithful in St. Peter's Square, including a group from Slovenia, whom he addressed in their language, adding improvised words to the prepared text. Excited cheers rose from the crowd when the Pope greeted them.