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Wednesday, July 21, 2004


VATICAN CITY, JUL 21, 2004 (VIS) - After a 12-day vacation in the mountains of Valle D'Aosta, today the Pope resumed his catechesis on the psalms during the general audience. Addressing 8,000 people who filled the Paul VI Hall, the Holy Father spoke about one of the lines of Psalm 118, "Promise to keep God's commandments."

  The psalm, he affirmed, says that "on the path of life, we often encounter moments of darkness, but the light of  the Word of God dispels that darkness, often quite unexpectedly. … The perfect image of God's light is Christ Himself, Who proclaims: 'I am the light of the world'."

  John Paul II indicated that the psalmist evokes "the suffering and dangers of life that the faithful must confront and who need to be illuminated and sustained. … The faithful person passes through the world amidst dangers, cares, persecutions; he knows that tribulation is always close at hand. The Christian knows that every day he must take up the cross on the way to Calvary."

  "Nevertheless," he said, "the just man remains faithful. … Peace of conscience is the strength of the believer; his constancy in obeying the divine commandments is a source of serenity. He wants to be completely faithful to God's will. On this path, he will find  peace in his soul and will be able to overcome the dark entanglement of trials, gaining true happiness."

  While greeting Italian pilgrims, the Pope addressed in a special way the new general director of the Small Work of Divine Providence, Fr. Flavio Peloso, and the members of the General Chapter.  "I hope," he said, "that your joy at the recent canonization of your founder, St. Luigi Orione - on May 16 - may be translated into a renewed commitment to fidelity to Christ, the Church and the poor."

  After the audience, the Pope returned by car to his residence in Castelgandolfo.
AG/PSALM 118/…                            VIS 20040721 (320) 

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