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» 11/28/2012
VATICAN
Every AIDS patient should have access to available drugs, pope says
Benedict XVI makes an appeal for World AIDS Day, 1 December. During the General Audience, he asked a "central question," namely how to speak about God in our times. By going back to the essentials, we can explain through "words and acts that God is not a competitor in our existence but rather its true guarantor." In fact, he is not "an abstract intelligence far from us. God is interested in us; God loves us."

Vatican City (AsiaNews) - "World AIDS Day, a United Nations initiative intended to draw attention to a disease that has caused millions of deaths and tragic human suffering, will fall on 1 December," the pope told Catholics to encourage them to help people living with AIDS. "HIV/AIDS affects particularly the poorest regions of the world, where there is very limited access to effective medicines. My thoughts turn in particular to the large number of children who contract the virus from their mothers each year, despite the treatments which exist to prevent its transmission. I encourage the many initiatives that, within the scope of the ecclesial mission, have been taken in order to eradicate this scourge."

Benedict XVI made his appeal at the end of today's General Audience. Speaking before 8,000 people in the Paul VI Hall, he asked also a "central question," namely how to speak about God in our times, how to bring the Gospel to the "closed hearts of our contemporaries and to their minds distracted by the limelight of society," which however hold a "desire for authenticity".

First, "we can speak about God because God spoke to us. [. . .] God is not a faraway idea, an abstract intelligence far from us. God is interested in us; God loves us. [. . .] He himself  communicated by incarnating himself."

"Speaking about God means first and foremost addressing the men and women of our times, not an abstract or hypothetical God, but a real God," one "who entered history."

Speaking about God requires "familiarity with Jesus and His Gospel, a profound knowledge of God and a strong passion for His plan for salvation, without giving in to the temptations of success, but following God's own method, humility. God became one of us. This is the method realised in the incarnation in the simple house in Nazareth and the Grotto in Bethlehem, that of the parable about the mustard seed. We must not fear the humility of small steps."

"We must return to the simplicity and essential nature of proclamation, the concrete Good News of God Who cares about us, the love of God which Jesus Christ brought close to us, even unto the Cross, and which in the Resurrection opens us to life without end, to eternal life."

Looking at "how Jesus Christ Himself communicated," we see that he was interested in "every human situation He encountered" and "immersed Himself in the lives of the men and women of His time, with complete trust in the help of the Father. The disciples, who lived with Jesus, and the crowds that met him, saw his reactions to different problems, how he spoke and behaved. They saw in Him the action of the Holy Spirit, God's action. In Him, proclamation and life were entwined: Jesus acted and taught, always taking as a starting point His intimate relationship with God the Father. This approach gives fundamental indications to Christians: living in faith and charity is a way of speaking about God in our times, because it demonstrates the credibility of what we say in words through a life lived in Christ."

"We must take care to grasp the signs of our times, and thereby to identify the potential, the desires and the obstacles we encounter in contemporary culture, in particular the desire for authenticity, the yearning for transcendence, the sensibility for protecting creation. And we must communicate without fear the answer offered by faith in God. The Year of Faith is an opportunity to discover with the active fantasy of the Holy Spirit new personal and community paths so that everywhere the strength of the Gospel is wisdom of life and direction for existence.

In concluding, the pope said, "Speaking about God, therefore, means enabling others to understand through words and acts that God is not a competitor in our existence but rather its true guarantor, the guarantor of the greatness of the human person. Thus we return to the beginning: speaking about God means communicating, with power and simplicity, through words and the life we lead, that which is essential: the God of Jesus Christ, the God Who showed us a love so great that He took on human flesh, died and rose again for us; the God Who asks us to follow Him and to allow ourselves to be transformed by His immense love in order to renew our lives and our relationships; the God Who gave us the Church, to allow us to journey together and, through the Word and the Sacraments, to renew the entire City of Man so that it might become the City of God."


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See also
09/16/2009 VATICAN
Pope: a spiritual leadership is needed for all, especially for the young
12/09/2009 VATICAN
Pope: The Eucharist is not a "rite of socialization," in it Jesus is truly present
08/01/2012 VATICAN
Pope: Do not be afraid to knock with confidence on the door of the Lord
05/30/2012 VATICAN
Pope: "gratuitous speculation" on the issue of stolen documents, "renewed confidence in my staff"
05/16/2012 VATICAN
Pope: "There is no human cry that is not heard by God"

Editor's choices
ISLAM - MIDDLE EAST
Al Azhar and Vatican against terrorism. The ambiguity of the international community
by Bernardo CervelleraThe influential Sunni university denounces " heinous" violence of the Islamic state and demands the world defeat this group “through every possible means". Vatican: terrorism is a threat to all humanity. France claims to fight terrorism, but then sells weapons, aircraft, helicopter gunships to Saudi Arabia, which supports Islamic fundamentalism. Kuwait tolerates Salafis who support the Nusra Front and the Islamic state. Turkey against the Kurds; the United States against Iran, Russia and China.
TUNISIA - ISLAM
Tunis, stop terrorism by closing fundamentalist mosquesPresident Essebsi believes unified and global strategy needed to counter terrorism. The attack in Sousse almost simultaneous with those in France, Kuwait, Somalia. Islamic State claims responsibility.
VATICAN – ITALY
Pope in Turin tells young people to be chaste in love, go against the flow and not retire at 20In his last meeting on the first day of his visit to Turin, Francis met young people in Vittorio Square. In a Question and Answer exchange, he talked about love, friendship and loss of trust towards life. "I understand you. How many hypocrites speak of peace and sell weapons. How can one trust? By following Christ, whose act of extreme love, i.e. the Cross, saved humanity." The pontiff also looked at the horrors of the 20th century as evidence of the loss of trust towards world powers. He urged young people “not to retire at 20,” but “live, don’t just exist.”

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