November 1, 2005 to November 28, 2005


November 1, 2005:  Conclusion of the Angelus Address

Dear friends, the tradition of these days of visiting the tombs of our deceased ones is an occasion to think about the mystery of death without fear, and to cultivate that incessant watchfulness which allows us to face it serenely. The Virgin Mary, the Queen of Saints to whom we turn now with filial confidence, will help us in this.

November 6, 2005:  Angelus Address

This [attitude of "religious listening”] is the typical attitude of Mary Most Holy exactly as shown in the emblematic image of the annunciation: The Virgin receives the heavenly messenger while meditating on the sacred Scriptures, represented generally with a book that May holds in her hands, or on her lap, or on a lectern. This is also the image of the Church offered by the Council itself, in the constitution "Dei Verbum" (No. 1). Let us pray so that, like Mary, the Church is a docile handmaid of the Divine Word and proclaims it always with firm confidence so that "the whole world, hearing, will believe the proclamation of salvation; believing will hope, and hoping will love" (ibid.).

November 26, 2005:  Sunday of Advent 

 May Mary Most Holy, the faithful Virgin, guide us to make this period of Advent, and the whole of the new liturgical year, a journey of true sanctification, to the praise and glory of God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.First Vespers of the first

November 26, 2005:  Papal Homily at Vespers of First Sunday of Advent celebrated in St. Peter's Basilica

Taking as our model Mary Most Holy, who teaches us to live by devoutly listening to the Word of God, let us reflect on the short Bible reading just proclaimed.

To understand the meaning of this word, hence, of the Apostle's prayer for this community and for communities of all times -- also for us -- we must look at the person through whom the coming of the Lord was uniquely brought about: the Virgin Mary.  Mary belonged to that part of the people of Israel who in Jesus' time were waiting with heartfelt expectation for the Savior's coming. And from the words and acts recounted in the Gospel, we can see how she truly lived steeped in the prophets' words; she entirely expected the Lord's coming.  

 She could not, however, have imagined how this coming would be brought about. Perhaps she expected a coming in glory. The moment when the Archangel Gabriel entered her house and told her that the Lord, the Savior, wanted to take flesh in her, wanted to bring about his coming through her, must have been all the more surprising to her.

 We can imagine the Virgin's apprehension. Mary, with a tremendous act of faith and obedience, said "yes": "I am the servant of the Lord." And so it was that she became the "dwelling place" of the Lord, a true "temple" in the world and a "door" through which the Lord entered upon the earth.

It is the Holy Spirit himself who formed in the Virgin's womb Jesus, the perfect Man, who brings God's marvelous plan to completion in the human person, first of all by transforming the heart and from this center, all the rest.

May Mary Most Holy, the faithful Virgin, guide us to make this time of Advent and of the whole new liturgical year a path of genuine sanctification, to the praise and glory of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

November 28, 2005:  Address to Dutch Youth, Vatican City

If you do not know how to pray, ask him [Jesus] to teach you and ask his heavenly Mother to pray with and for you. … The prayer of the rosary can help you to learn the art of prayer with the simplicity and depth of Mary.



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