February 10, 2000
volume 11, no. 29
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NEWS & VIEWS     Acknowledgments
Articles provided through Catholic World News and Church News at Noticias Eclesiales and International Dossiers, Daily Dispatches and Features at ZENIT International News Agency. CWN, NE and ZENIT are not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provide this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

John Paul II at the Wednesday General Audience

    VATICAN CITY, FEB 9 (ZENIT).- The Jubilee aims to help all men and women to discover the "secret and effective presence" of God in history, so that all will be able to hope for a "new, more authentically Christian and human world," explained the Holy Father in this week's catechesis.

    Some 13 thousand faithful from fifteen countries gathered in St. Peter's Square today to hear the Pope's traditional Wednesday Audience. Among those present was a group of American Baptists from Wisconsin, representatives of Tamil Indians, and numerous Pentecostal African American Bishops who traveled to Rome with the explicit desire to better understand the role and work of the Holy See.

    The Pope delved into the most beautiful passages of the Old and New Testament that reveal the tenderness and affection of God for humanity, concluding that "by the light of the Father, the Son, and the Spirit, history ceases to be a succession of events dissolved in the chasm of the dead, but becomes fertile ground for the seeds of eternity, a path that brings us to that sublime destination in which 'God may be all in all.' "

    The theme of the Pope's meeting with the faithful, "The Glory of the Trinity in History," constituted another chapter in a series of meditations about the Mystery of Christian mysteries, the Triune God, which the Holy Father has chosen for this Jubilee year 2000.

The Unsettling Presence of the Father

    The Pope began by looking at how the Father makes himself present in our lives. Thus, he chose texts that leave us baffled witnessing God's paternal affection, such as the text of the prophet Hosea: "When Israel was a child, I loved him, and out of Egypt I called my son... it was I who taught Ephraim to walk, I took them up in my arms; but they did not know that I healed them. I led them with cords of human kindness, with bands of love. I was to them like those who lift infants to their cheeks. I bent down to them and fed them... My heart recoils within me; my compassion grows warm and tender."

The Zenith of Love: the Son

    The presence of God the Father in history reaches its peak when Christ becomes man. "The son is inserted into time and space as living and life-giving center that gives definitive sense to the flow of history, saving it from dispersion and banality," affirmed the Pontiff, adding that "all of humanity converges with its joys and tears, with its troubled succession of good and evil, on Christ's cross, the wellspring of salvation and of eternal life."

The Presence of the Spirit

    However, John Paul II made clear, "in order to discover beneath the ebb and flow of events this secret and effective presence" of God, "it is necessary to go beyond the superficialities of dates and of historical occurrences. Here, the Holy Spirit goes into action."

    And so, the Holy Spirit "not only unveils the sense of history, but imparts the strength to collaborate in the divine project that is accomplished in it," according to the Pope.

    Also in St. Peter's Square today were numerous sick people, who have come to Rome to participate in their Jubilee, which will begin tomorrow and end on Sunday. The Pope implored for them the "consolation and hope" of our Lady of Lourdes. Given the large numbers of pilgrims participating in the Audiences during the Holy Year 2000, they are being held outside, and not in the Audience Hall of Paul VI. Today the skies were gray, but the temperature was quite pleasant for a Roman winter morning. ZE00020908


February 10, 2000
volume 11, no. 29

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