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Pope’s Angelus on June 29

Vatican City, 29 June 2013: The feast of Saints Peter and Paul, in a special way is the feast of the Church of Rome, founded on the martyrdom of the two Apostles. But it is also a big feast for the universal Church, because the whole People of God is indebted to them for the gift of faith, said Pope Francis during his Angelus prayer on Saturday.

In remarks to the faithful gathered in St Peter's square for the Angelus prayer, the Pontiff said “What a joy it is to believe in a God who is all Love, all Grace.” Also at the Angelus, Pope Francis greeted the delegation from the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, led by Metropolitan Ioannis Zizoulas. “Let us not forget that Peter had a brother, Andrew,” said Pope Francis, “who met Jesus first, spoke of Him to Peter and took Peter to meet the Lord.”

Then Pope Francis asked all the gathered faithful to join him in praying a Hail Mary for Patriarch Bartholomew. The Holy Father then greeted all the pilgrim faithful who, from every part of the world, were come to celebrate the feast in Rome.
Peter was the first to confess that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and Paul revealed this to the Greco-Roman world. And Providence has willed that both reach here in Rome, and pay with their blood for their faith. For this reason the Church of Rome has become, immediately, spontaneously, the reference point for all the churches around the world. Not for the power of the Empire, but for the strength of martyrdom, the testimony of Christ! In the end, it is always the love of Christ that generates faith, the Pope said.

When Peter confessed his faith in Jesus, it was not to his human powers, but the grace that Jesus gave off, the love he felt in his words and saw in his actions: Jesus was God's love in person!
And the same happened to Paul, though in a different way. Paul as a young man was an enemy of the Christians, and when the Risen Christ called him on the Damascus road, his life was transformed: he realized that Jesus was not dead, but alive, and he also loved him, who was his enemy! Here is the experience of the mercy and forgiveness of God in Jesus Christ: this is the Good News, the Gospel that Peter and Paul have experienced in themselves and for which they gave their lives. Mercy, forgiveness, and the Lord always forgives us, the Lord has mercy, he is gracious, and has a heart always awaits us, added the Pope.
Source: VR Sedoc


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