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Monday, November 19, 2012


Vatican City, 18 November 2012 (VIS) - At midday today the Holy Father appeared at the window of his study to recite the Angelus with faithful gathered in St. Peter's Square. He commented on this Sunday's Gospel, focusing on Jesus' words about the end of time, often considered one of the most difficult texts in the Gospel.

"This difficulty derives from both the content and the language", explained Benedict XVI. "It describes a future that exceeds our own categories of comprehension, and Jesus therefore uses images and words from the Old Testament, but above all, He introduces a new centre, Himself, the mystery of His person, His death and His resurrection. … It is Jesus Himself who connects present and future; the ancient words of the prophets finally find a point of reference in the Nazarene Messiah: He is the true foundation which, amid the world's disorder, remains firm and stable".

"We know that in the Bible the Word of God is the origin of creation. All of creation, starting from the heavenly bodies - the sun, the moon and heavens - obey the Word of God, and exist inasmuch as they are 'called into being' by the Word. This creative power of the Divine Word is concentrated in Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh, and passes through His human words, the true 'firmament' that guides man's thoughts and actions on earth. Therefore, Jesus does not describe the end of the world, and when He uses apocalyptic images, He does not act as a 'seer'. On the contrary, He wishes to ensure that His disciples in every age remain unmoved by dates and predictions, and gives them instead a more profound understanding, showing them the right path to take, now and in the future, towards eternal life. Everything changes, the Lord reminds us, but the Word of God does not change, and before it each of us is responsible for our own actions. It is on this basis that we will be judged".

"Natural disasters occur in our times too, as, unfortunately, do wars and violence. We too need a stable foundation for our lives and our hopes, especially in view of the relativism that surrounds us. May the Virgin Mary help us to find this stable centre in the person of Christ and His Word", the Pope concluded.

Following the Angelus, in his greetings in several languages the Pope mentioned the fact that Maria Crescencia Perez (1897-1932) had been beatified yesterday in Pergamino, Argentina. She was a religious of the Congregation of the Daughters of Our Lady of the Orchard and was known as "an example of gentleness inspired by faith. We give thanks to God for her witness", Benedict XVI said.

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