THE VICAR OF CHRIST SPEAKS INTRODUCTION|
Today, we bring you the words from His Holiness Pope John Paul II's Angelus Message yesterday at St. Peter's Square in which the Holy Father remembered the sick who he administered to on Friday, the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes and World Day for the Sick. The Pope also used the occasion to extend a special warm invitation to artists the world over to come to Rome to participate in a special Jubilee Year celebration for artists to be celebrated this coming Friday on the Feast of Blessed Father Angelico, considered the patron of artists. The full English text was translated and provided by ZENIT news agency ZE00021327.
1. Still vivid is the memory of the extraordinary celebration of the Jubilee of the sick in St. Peter's Square this past Friday, feast of Our Lady of Lourdes.
Sickness helps us to understand the mystery of man. Like the leper spoken of in the Gospel this Sunday, when we are sick we experience the fragility of being human and strongly feel the desire to be cured. In Jesus, who is moved to compassion for us, we find support and the answer to our most profound expectations. In his Cross, all suffering acquires the possibility of meaning; sickness does not cease to be a trial, but it is illuminated by hope.
Indeed, God does not desire sickness; he did not create evil and death. But, from the moment in which these, through sin, entered the world, his love extended itself totally to make mankind well, to cure it from sin and from every evil, and to fill it with life, peace, and joy. This then is the consoling proclamation of the Jubilee, and, in particular, of this Great Jubilee that calls to mind two thousand years since the Incarnation of Christ.
2. Following the Jubilee itinerary, which becomes ever more full of spiritual opportunities, this Friday, February 18, on the liturgical commemoration of their patron, Blessed Fra Angelico, the Jubilee of Artists will be celebrated. Under these circumstances I will have the joy of meeting these brothers and sisters of ours who, gifted by God with special intuitive and expressive capabilities, present themselves as privileged interpreters of the human mystery. They will come to Rome to manifest their faith in Jesus Christ, Word of God incarnate, epiphany of divine beauty in a human form. Christ is the supreme source of universal art's inspiration, and the contemporary age, even though marked by atheism, confirms it: the greatest artists of each continent have felt the need to measure themselves by Christ and his inexhaustible mystery. For this reason, the Church applies herself in a special way to a dialogue with art.
3. We entrust to the Virgin all Beautiful this singular Jubilee celebration. In her, immune from the contagiousness of original sin, shines the splendor of Christ, Beauty who has redeemed the world. May Mary help us to love this Beauty, and make it shine forth constantly in our existence.
February 13, 2000 |
volume 10, no. 31
THE VICAR OF CHRIST SPEAKS
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