THURSDAY
February 3, 2000
volume 11, no. 24

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THE VICAR OF CHRIST SPEAKS         INTRODUCTION

    Today, we bring you the words from His Holiness Pope John Paul II's Angelus message from this past Sunday who chose as his topic Consecrated Life for that is what his prayer intention is for February - Prayer for Vocations to Religious Life and a preface to his special Jubilee Mass for the Consecrated yesterday at St. Peter's. In his address, the Pope invited all, not just religious, to join him and the religious of the world in a special three-day preparation for the Presentation of Our Lord in reconsecrating themselves to God just as those who are vowed to the Consecrated Life throughout the world will also do. The full English text was translated and provided by ZENIT news agency ZE00013023.


Angelus Address from Sunday, January 30, 2000

"A GIFT FOR THE WHOLE CHURCH"

    Dear Brothers and Sisters,

    1. Next Wednesday, February 2, Feast of the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple, the Jubilee of consecrated life will be celebrated, that is, of the persons who have consecrated their life to Christ, committing themselves with vows of poverty, chastity and obedience.

        I wish to send a special greeting to these brothers and sisters of ours: to those who have come to Rome for this occasion, and to all in every part of the world who celebrate their Jubilee in their respective dioceses. I encourage all to cross the Holy Door with confidence and hope, renewing their full disposition to make of their own life a song of praise to the Most Holy Trinity. Here in Rome we are preparing for this event with a triduum that begins today. Today is dedicated to giving thanks for vocations and consecrations, which are inestimable gifts of God, to participate in the person of Jesus Christ, the "Anointed One" of the Father. Tomorrow the topic will be that of fraternal communion, and in the afternoon in the Paul VI Auditorium in the Vatican, there will be a joyful celebration of consecrated persons, which can be followed on radio and television. On February 1, then, the day that will highlight mission and witness, Eucharistic adoration is scheduled in the Basilica of St. Mary Major. The climax of the Jubilee of the consecrated life will be the Holy Mass that, God willing, I will have the joy to preside in St. Peter's Square, surrounded by a large crowd of consecrated persons.

    2. I invite you all to spiritually join the brothers and sisters who express the different forms of consecrated life, because their vocation is a gift for the whole Church! The Bride of Christ, the Church herself, owes much of her beauty to the innumerable charisms of consecration that the Holy Spirit has inspired in the faithful over the centuries, beginning with the apostolic community until today. By their very presence, consecrated persons are a sign of Christ and of his lifestyle, and while they invite us to put nothing before God or his Kingdom, they are an example to all of generosity in prayer and dedication to their neighbor.

    3. This is what we see realized perfectly in Mary of Nazareth: her most singular union with the incarnate Word makes her a model of the evangelical life, obedient, poor, and chaste like that of Jesus.

        Consecrated persons, men and women, have always recognized in the Blessed Virgin the mother of their vocation, experiencing her kindly help in favorable times and in difficulties. Today, let us entrust to Mary all her consecrated daughters and sons. Let us pray that humanity will be able to find in their evangelical witness effective help to walk in the new millennium according to God's plan.

          

February 3, 2000
volume 10, no. 24
THE VICAR OF CHRIST SPEAKS

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