Vatican City (AsiaNews) - "Each one of us is invited to enter" the crucifixion, death and resurrection of Jesus, who is "the foundation, the rock" of our faith, because, as St. Paul says, if He is not risen, our faith is empty and insubstantial. Belief in the Resurrection was the focus of the Pope's homily at Mass celebrated this morning in St. Peter's Basilica for the souls of cardinals and bishops who died during the year.
"This celebration- he said - thanks to the Word of God, is illuminated by faith in the Resurrection. A truth that has made with difficulty in the Old Testament". "All of Divine Revelation - he continued - is the result of the dialogue between God and His people, and also the belief in the Resurrection is related to this dialogue that accompanies the journey of God's people throughout history. It is no wonder that a mystery so great, so decisive, so superhuman as that of the Resurrection required an entire journey, as long as necessary, up to Jesus Christ. He can say, "I am the Resurrection and the life" (Jn 11:25), for in Him not only is this mystery fully revealed, but it takes place takes place, it occurs, becoming for the first time a definitive reality. The Gospel we have just heard, which unites - according to Mark - the story of Jesus' death and that of the empty tomb, is the culmination of the entire journey: it is the event of the Resurrection, which responds to the long search of God's people, the search of every person and of all humanity".
"Everyone is invited to enter into this event. We are called to stand before the Cross of Christ, like Mary, like the women, like the centurion, to listen to the cry of Jesus, and his last breath, and finally the silence, the silence that continues throughout Holy Saturday. And then we are called to go to the tomb to see that the great stone was overturned, to hear the announcement: "He is risen, He is not here" (Mk 16 6). There is the answer. There is the foundation, the rock. Not in the persuasive words of wisdom', but in the living word of the Cross and Resurrection of Jesus. This is what the apostle Paul preached: Jesus Christ crucified and risen. If He is not risen, our faith is empty and insubstantial. But because He is risen, indeed, He is the Resurrection, then our faith is full of truth and eternal life".
"Renewing the tradition, we now offer the Eucharistic Sacrifice in suffrage for our brother cardinals and bishops who have died in the past twelve months. And our prayer is enhanced by feelings, memories and gratitude for the testimony of the people we knew, with whom we shared our service in the Church. Many of their faces - he concluded - are present to us, but all, each of them looked to the Father with His merciful love. And together with the gaze of our heavenly Father, there is also that of the Mother who intercedes for these children whom she so loved. Together with the faithful who have served here on earth may they know the joy of the new Jerusalem".