This morning, the Pope continued his visit in Poland by presiding over the Eucharistic celebration in Warsaw's Pilsudski Square, also known as Victory Square, he reaffirmed his strong criticism against the dictatorship of relativism.
It was in Pilsudski Square, on June 2 1979, that John Paul II began his first pastoral visit to his homeland. Concelebrating with the Holy Father were Polish cardinals and bishops, as well as bishops from other countries and a large number of priests. The service was attended by 270,000 people, including Lech Kaczynski, president of Poland, and other civil authorities.
Benedict XVI recalled in his homily how in the same square, "on the eve of Pentecost, Pope John Paul II uttered the significant words of the prayer 'Let your Spirit descend, and renew the face of the earth.' And he added: 'The face of this land'."
"How can we not thank God today for all that was accomplished in your native land and in the whole world during the pontificate of John Paul II? Before our eyes, changes occurred in entire political, economic and social systems. People in various countries regained their freedom and their sense of dignity."
Faced with people or groups who obscure Church tradition, "seeking to falsify the Word of Christ and to remove from the Gospel those truths which, in their view, are too uncomfortable for modern man," said the Pope, "every Christian is bound to confront his own convictions continually with the teachings of the Gospel and of the Church's Tradition in the effort to remain faithful to the word of Christ, even when it is demanding and, humanly speaking, hard to understand.
"We must not yield to the temptation of relativism or of a subjectivist and selective interpretation of Sacred Scripture. Only the whole truth can open us to adherence to Christ, Who died and rose for our salvation." The Pope firmly declared.
After highlighting how "faith consists in an intimate relationship with Christ," Benedict XVI made it clear that to love Christ means "trusting Him even in times of trial. ... Entrusting ourselves to Christ, we lose nothing, we gain everything. In His hands our life acquires its true meaning. ... To love Him is to remain in dialogue with Him, in order to know His will and to put it into effect promptly."
He added: "Yet living one's personal faith as a love-relationship with Christ also means being ready to renounce everything that constitutes a denial of His love. ... Faith as adherence to Christ is revealed as love that prompts us to promote the good inscribed by the Creator into the nature of every man and woman among us, into the personality of every human being and into everything that exists in the world."
The Pope concluded his homily by recalling that 27 years ago, "in this place, Pope John Paul II said: 'Poland has become nowadays the land of particularly responsible witness.' I ask you now," he added, "to cultivate this rich heritage of faith transmitted to you by earlier generations, the heritage of the thought and the service of that great Pole who was Pope John Paul II. Stand firm in your faith, hand it down to your children, bear witness to the grace which you have experienced so abundantly through the Holy Spirit in the course of your history."
Early this afternoon, he will travel by helicopter to Czestochowa where he will visit the most famous Marian shrine in Poland and meet with religious, seminarians and representatives from Catholic movements and institutes of consecrated life. He will then He will then move on to Krakow where he is due spend the night in the archbishop's place.