Castel Gandolfo (AsiaNews) – In reciting the Angelus today from Castel Gandolfo, Benedict XVI focused on the “heroism” of Saint James, hopeful that he might travel to Santiago de Compostela this November, and on Jesus’ entreaty to pray, which “does not mean asking God to satisfy one’s desires, but rather calls upon us to keep our friendship with Him keenly alive. The Holy Father also had some thoughts about the “tragedy of Duisburg”.
Inspired by today’s Gospel and speaking before a crowd of 3,000 people that had gathered in the inner courtyard of the Apostolic Palace of Castel Gandolfo, the Pope spoke about the Pater Noster, which Jesus taught. “Before us,” he said, “are the first words of the Holy Scripture we learn in childhood. They remain graved in our memory, shape our life and accompany us until our last breath. They show that ‘we are not yet fully God’s children, but ought to become and be so always through our ever deep communion with Jesus. As children we follow Christ’.” This last sentence comes from the book the Pope wrote on Jesus of Nazareth.
As he takes some time off, Benedict XVI is still working on his book on Jesus. As Fr Federico Lombardi, director of the Press Office of the Holy See, said, “In the past few days, the Pope has started working on the third volume of his great opus on Jesus. After handing in a few months ago the second tome, dedicated to the Passion and Resurrection and currently undergoing translation in various languages for publication next spring, Benedict XVI has started on the third and final volume, dedicated to the ‘Gospels of childhood’.”
Again today, the Pope stressed, “Every time we recite Our Father, our voice becomes entwined with that of the Church, because those who pray are never alone. By themselves, believers must seek and shall find in the truth and richness of the Christian prayer, taught by the Church, their own life, their own way of praying . . . . They will allow themselves to be led . . . by the Holy Spirit, which guides them, through Christ, to the Father.”
Lastly, Benedict XVI said, “Today is the Feast Day of the Apostle James, called the Greater, who left his father and his job as a fisher to follow Jesus, and for Him, gave his life, first among the Apostles. With all my heart,” he added, “I dedicate a special thought to the pilgrims who have travelled in great numbers to Santiago de Compostela.”
As he greeted Spanish pilgrims, the Pope also spoke about the Spanish shrine, expressing his hope that he can travel to the city this November. Similarly, in greeting French pilgrims, he urged them “imitate the heroism of Saint James” who “carried the Gospel until the end of the world as it was known in his times.”