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Pope's general audience of Feb. 5



Vatican City, 5 February 2014: Pope Francis held his weekly general audience on Wednesday, where he delivered a catechesis on the Sacrament of the Eucharist. The public meeting is an opportunity for pilgrims and tourists visiting Rome to be able to see and hear the Pope, and also receive his blessing. The general audience of February 5 was held in the open, in Rome’s St. Peter’s Square. It began with aides reading a passage from the Gospel of St. Mathew, in several languages.
Listen: RealAudioMP3

Basing himself on the scripture passage, Pope Francis delivered his main discourse in Italian - summaries of which were read out by aides in various languages, including English. But first, the aide greeted the Pope on behalf of the English-speaking pilgrims.
Listen: RealAudioMP3

… Dear Brothers and Sisters: In our catechesis on the sacraments of Christian initiation, we now reflect on the Eucharist, the sacrament of Christ’s Body and Blood. As the source of the Church’s life, the Eucharist accompanies every step of our pilgrimage of faith, fellowship and witness. The Mass is a banquet which nourishes us not only with the bread of life received from the altar, where Christ’s sacrifice is offered, but also with the proclamation of God’s word in the Scriptures. At the Last Supper, Christ gave us this sacrament when he broke bread and offered the cup as the foreshadowing of his sacrifice on the Cross. In the Eucharistic sacrifice, Jesus has thus given us the supreme prayer of thanksgiving to God our merciful Father. As the memorial of the Lord’s passion, death and resurrection, the Eucharist makes present the paschal mystery in all its saving power. May we give thanks for this great gift, which grants us a foretaste of the heavenly banquet when we will see God face to face. Let us ask the Lord, present in this holy sacrament, always to shape our lives and our communities.

Pope Francis then greeted the English-speaking pilgrims in Italian.
Listen: RealAudioMP3

... I greet all the English-speaking pilgrims present at today’s Audience, including those from England and the United States. I greet in particular the group of Pallottine Missionary Sisters. Upon you and your families I invoke God’s blessings of joy and peace! (BLESSING)




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