June 2010


"Cyprus Stands at the Crossroads of Cultures and Religions" - Greeting at Paphos Airport, marking the beginning of his three-day trip to the island Cyprus, June 4, 2010

...Mr President, dear friends, with these thoughts, I entrust my pilgrimage to Mary, the Mother of God, and to the intercession of Saints Paul and Barnabas.

"We, Her Children, Live in the Same Confident Hope:" On Mary's Example of Hope - Angelus address at the Eleftheria Sports Centre in Nicosia, Cyprus, June 6, 2010

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

At the midday hour it is the Church's tradition to turn in prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary, joyfully recalling her ready acceptance of the Lord's invitation to become the mother of God. It was an invitation that filled her with trepidation, one which she could scarcely even comprehend. It was a sign that God had chosen her, his lowly handmaid, to cooperate with him in his saving work. How we rejoice at the generosity of her response! Through her "yes", the hope of the ages became a reality, the One whom Israel had long awaited came into the world, into our history. Of him the angel promised that his kingdom would have no end (cf. Lk 1:33).

Some thirty years later, as Mary stood weeping at the foot of the cross, it must have been hard to keep that hope alive. The forces of darkness seemed to have gained the upper hand. And yet, deep down, she would have remembered the angel's words. Even amid the desolation of Holy Saturday the certitude of hope carried her forward into the joy of Easter morning. And so we, her children, live in the same confident hope that the Word made flesh in Mary's womb will never abandon us. He, the Son of God and Son of Mary, strengthens the communion that binds us together, so that we can bear witness to him and to the power of his healing and reconciling love.

… Let us now implore Mary our Mother to intercede for all of us, for the people of Cyprus, and for the Church throughout the Middle East with Christ, her Son, the Prince of Peace.

"There Is a Great and Ancient Christianity in the Middle East" Words En Route to Cyprus aboard the Papal Plane, June 6, 2010

... Father Lombardi: … Let's move to another topic, that of ecumenism. Your Holiness, dialogue with the Orthodox has taken many steps forward from the cultural, spiritual and life perspective. On the occasion of the recent concert given as a gift to you by the Patriarch of Moscow one felt a deep harmony between the Orthodox and Catholics in the face of the challenges posed to Christianity in Europe by secularization. But what is your view on the dialogue, also from the more properly theological perspective?

Benedict XVI: … Then there are other elements: the liturgy, the common love for Mary bind us deeply and more and more it becomes clear to us too that they are the foundation of the Christian life. …

"Be Strong in Your Faith, Joyful in God's Service and Generous" - Words at Meeting with Cypriot Catholics, held at the sports field of St. Maron primary school Nicosia, June 5, 2010

... With these few words, I entrust all of you to the protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the intercession of Saints Paul and Barnabas.

"The Priesthood ... Is not Simply Office, but Sacrament" - Homily at End of Year for Priests, June 11, 2010

… The liturgy of the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus also permits another phrase, similar to this, to be used as the communion antiphon. It is taken from the Gospel of John: Whoever is thirsty, let him come to me. And let the one who believes in me drink. As the Scripture has said: "Out of his heart shall flow rivers of living water" (cf. Jn 7:37ff.) In faith we drink, so to speak, of the living water of God’s Word. In this way the believer himself becomes a wellspring which gives living water to the parched earth of history. We see this in the saints. We see this in Mary, that great woman of faith and love who has become in every generation a wellspring of faith, love and life. Every Christian and every priest should become, starting from Christ, a wellspring which gives life to others. We ought to be offering life-giving water to a parched and thirst world. Lord, we thank you because for our sake you opened your heart; because in your death and in your resurrection you became the source of life. Give us life, make us live from you as our source, and grant that we too may be sources, wellsprings capable of bestowing the water of life in our time. …

"The Priest Is Formed by Christ’s Charity Itself" – Angelus Address June 13, 2010

… Dear brothers and sisters, let us entrust all the priests of the world to Mary’s Immaculate Heart -- whose liturgical memorial we celebrated yesterday -- so that by the power of the Gospel they may continue to build in every place the civilization of love.

[In Spanish, he said:]

I cordially greet the Spanish-speaking groups that have participated in this Marian prayer, particularly the faithful from Colombia and Mexico, as well as the members of the Brotherhood of Our Father Jesus of Nazareth and Holy Mary of Sorrows, of Jaen.

"Assume a True 'Passion' for Ecclesial Communion" - Address to Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy, June 14, 2010

… Dear students, I hope that your house might be, as my predecessor Paul VI liked to say, a "higher school of charity," my prayer accompanies you, while I entrust you to the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mater Ecclesiae, and to St. Anthony Abbot, patron of the Academy.

"The Sunday Eucharist Is the Testimony of Charity" - Address at Rome's Diocesan Conference held in the Basilica of St. John Lateran, June 17, 2010

… May the Virgin Mary accompany the path of our Church of Rome with her maternal intercession. Mary, who in an altogether singular way lived communion with God and the sacrifice of her own Son on Calvary, enable us to live ever more intensely, piously and consciously the mystery of the Eucharist, to proclaim with the word and life the love that God has for every man.

"This Is the Sure Road to Find True Joy" - Homily for Rome Diocesan Ordinations, June 20, 2010

… May Mary, the handmaid of the Lord, who conformed her will to the will of God, who gave birth to Christ, giving him to the world, who followed the Son to the foot of the cross in the supreme act of love, accompany every day in your life and of your ministry. Thanks to the affection of this Mother, tender and strong, you can be joyfully faithful to that which is given to you today as presbyters: conformity to Christ the Priest, who knew how to obey the will of the Father and love man to the end. Amen!

"Taking up the Cross Means Committing Oneself to Defeating Sin" – Angelus Address, June 20, 2010

… Let us entrust to the maternal care of the Virgin Mary the new priests ordained today, who join the ranks of those the Lord has called by name: May they always be faithful disciples, courageous proclaimers of the Word of God and administrators of the gifts of salvation.

"In the School of the Saints, Let Us Be Enamored" of the Eucharist –General Audience, June 23, 2010

... All that St. Thomas illustrated with scientific rigor in his major theological works, such as the Summa Theologiae and the Summa contra Gentiles, was also explained in his preaching, addressed to students and the faithful. In 1273, a year before his death, during the whole of Lent, he preached in the San Domenico Maggiore Church in Naples. The content of those sermons was collected and conserved: They are the booklets in which he explains the Symbol of the Apostles, interprets the prayer of the Our Father, illustrates the Decalogue and comments on the Hail Mary. The content of the preaching of the Angelic Doctor corresponds almost entirely to the structure of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. In fact, in catechesis and in preaching, at a time like ours of renewed commitment to evangelization, these fundamental arguments must never be lacking: that is, what we believe, and here is the Symbol of the faith; what we pray, and here is the Our Father and the Hail Mary; and what we live as biblical revelation teaches us, and here is the law of love of God and of our neighbor and the Ten Commandments, as explanation of this mandate of love. ...

St. Thomas was, as all the saints, a great devotee of Our Lady. He described her with a beautiful appellative: Triclinium totius Trinitatis, triclinium, that is, place where the Trinity finds its rest, because, due to the Incarnation, the three divine Persons dwell [in her] and experience delight and joy to live in her soul full of grace as in no other creature. Through her intercession we can obtain all help. With a prayer, which traditionally is attributed to St. Thomas and that, in any case, reflects the elements of his profound Marian devotion, we also say: "O blessed and sweet Virgin Mary, Mother of God ... I entrust my whole life to your merciful heart. ... Obtain for me, oh my most sweet Lady, true charity, with which I will be able to love with all my heart your Most Holy Son and you, after him, above all things, and my neighbor in God and for God."

"You Were Consecrated to Jesus, to Belong to Him Exclusively" - Papal Homily During Visit to Dominican Cloister of Santa Maria del Rosario in Rome's Monte Mario district, June 24, 2010

… With great joy I accepted the invitation to visit this convent, to be able to pause with you at the feet of the image of St. Sixtus' acheropita Virgin, now protector of the Roman convents of St. Mary in Tempulo and of St. Sixtus. Together we have prayed the midday prayer, a small part of this Liturgical Prayer that, as cloistered, marks the rhythm of your days and makes you interpreters of the Church-Bride which unites her, in a special way, with her Lord.

… May you be able to pronounce every day your "yes" to God's designs, with the same humility with which the Holy Virgin said her "yes." May she, who in silence received the Word of God, guide you in your daily virginal consecration, so that you will be able to experience in obscurity the profound intimacy she lived with Jesus. Invoking her maternal protection, together with that of St. Dominic, St. Catherine of Siena and of the many men and women saints of the Dominican Order, I impart to you all a special Apostolic blessing, which I willingly extend to the persons who entrust themselves to your prayers.

"Works of Charity … Can Never Be Reduced to a Philanthropic Gesture" - Address at the Don Orione Center where he blessed a 29-foot tall restored statue of the Virgin Mary, June 24, 2010

… On this hill, the majestic statute of the Virgin, knocked down a few months ago by the fury of the wind, again watches over our city.

… Finally, I cannot but thank from my heart all those who in different ways have contributed to restore the statue of Our Lady to its original splendor. I was happy to accept the invitation to join you in rendering homage to Mary, "Salus Populi Romani," represented in this wonderful statue, so loved by the Roman people. A statue that brings back memories of tragic and providential events, written in the history and conscience of the city. In fact, it was placed on the top of Monte Mario in 1953, in fulfillment of a popular vow pronounced during World War II, when hostilities and arms made one fear for Rome's fate. From Don Orione's Roman works stemmed, then, the initiative to collect signatures for a vow, to which more than one million citizens adhered. The Venerable Pius XII took up the people's devout initiative that entrusted itself to Mary and the vow was pronounced on June 4, 1944, before the image of Our Lady of Divine Love. Precisely that day, the peaceful liberation of Rome took place. How can we not renew also today, dear friends of Rome, that gesture of devotion to Mary "Salus Populi Romani" by blessing this beautiful statue?

The Orionines wanted it to be large and to be placed high above the city, to render homage to the exalted holiness of the Mother of God, who, humble on earth, "was exalted above the angelic choirs in the celestial kingdom" (Gregory VII, Ad Adelaide di Ungheria), and to have, at the same time, a sign of her familiar presence in daily life. May Mary, Mother of God and our Mother, be always at the summit of your thoughts and affection, kind consolation of your souls, sure guide of your desires and support of your steps, persuasive inspirer of the imitation of Jesus Christ. May the Madonnina -- as the Romans like to call her -- in the gesture of looking from on high at the places of family, civil and religious life in Rome, protect families, inspire good resolutions, suggest to all the desire for heaven. "To look at heaven, to pray and then to go forward with courage and work! Ave Maria, and forward!" -- exhorted Saint Louis Orione.

In their vow to the Virgin, in addition to promising prayer and devotion, Romans also committed themselves to works of charity. For their part, the Orionines were involved in this Center of Monte Mario, even before the statue, in the reception of little ones who were mutilated and orphans. St. Louis Orione's program -- charity alone will save the world -- had a significant realization here and became a sign of hope for Rome, in union with the Madonnina placed on the top of the hill. …

May the maternal protection of Mary accompany you every day, whom we invoke together for all those who work in this center and for the whole Roman population and, while I assure each one of my remembrance in prayer, I bless you all with affection.

"Continue to Be a Concrete Sign of the Pope's Charity" - Address to Italian Charity Circolo San Pietro, an Italian charity founded in 1869, June 26, 2010

… I entrust your aspirations, plans and all your activities to the maternal protection of the Holy Virgin, “Salus Populi Romani,” that she might guide your steps, making you ever more convinced workers of solidarity and builders of peace in all the spheres where the worthy action of your association is carried out. With these vows, I invoke the heavenly intercession of Saints Peter and Paul and gladly impart to each of you, to your families and those you meet in your daily service a special Apostolic Benediction. 

"One of the Most Beautiful Experiences" – Angelus Address, June 27, 2010

… Dear friends, the month of June, characterized by devotion to the Sacred Heart of Christ, is already coming to an end. Indeed on the feast of the Sacred Heart we renewed our commitment to sanctification together with the priests of the whole world. Today I would like to invite everyone to contemplate the divine-human heart of the Lord Jesus, to draw from the source itself of God’s Love. Whoever fixes his gaze upon that pierced Heart that is always open out of love for us, senses the truth of this invocation: “Lord, you are my only good” (Responsorial Psalm), and is ready to leave everything to follow the Lord. O Mary, who answered the divine call without holding anything back, pray for us!

Communique concerning Audience with Cardinal Schönborn, June 28, 2010

... The Holy Father, recalling with great affection his own pastoral trip to Austria, via Cardinal Christoph Schonborn sends his greetings and encouragement to the Church in Austria, and to her pastors, entrusting the journey to renewed ecclesial communion to the celestial protection of the Blessed Virgin, so venerated at Mariazell.

"Received From God Different Charisms and Different Missions"- On Sts. Peter and Paul – Angelus Address, June 29, 2010

... … May the example of the Apostles Peter and Paul illumine minds and ignite in the hearts of believers the holy desire to do the will of God, so that the Church journeying on earth may always be faithful to her Lord. Let us turn with confidence to the Virgin Mary, Queen of the Apostles, who from Heaven guides and sustains the path of the People of God.

"His Secret Was Simple: To Be a Man of God" - On a Saint Who Taught and Guided Holy Priests – General Audience, June 30, 2010

… May we be helped by the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, to whom St. Joseph Cafasso was most devoted and whom he called "our dear Mother, our consolation, our hope."