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Tuesday, December 28, 2004


VATICAN CITY, DEC 26, 2004 (VIS) - John Paul II reflected on the feast of the Holy Family, celebrated today, before praying the Angelus with thousands of pilgrims gathered in St. Peter's Square.

  "The Son of God," he explained, "prepares himself to fulfill his mission as redeemer, living and working hard in the holy house in Nazareth.  In this way, He, united to every man through the Incarnation, sanctified the human family."

  "May the Holy Family, who had to overcome many painful trials, watch over all the families in the world, especially those who are experiencing difficult situations," he said.  "May the Holy Family also help men and women of culture and political leaders so that they may defend the institution of the family, based on marriage, and so that they may sustain the family as it confronts the grave challenges of the modern age!"

  "During this Year of the Eucharist," he concluded, "may Christian families find the light and strength to be united and to grow as the 'domestic church' especially in their diligent participation in the celebration of the Eucharist on Sunday."
ANG/HOLY FAMILY/...                           VIS 20041228 (200)

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