Tuesday, December 08, 2009
Pope Benedict XVI
Rome, Italy, Dec 8, 2009 / 02:42 pm (CNA).- The Holy Father made the trip across Rome this afternoon to complete the traditional act of papal veneration at the monument of the Blessed Virgin Mary on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. In his message from the Piazza di Spagna, he contrasted the loving example of Mary with the persistent drum beat of evil found in the news media.
The Pope addressed Romans from the site of the famous Spanish Steps, where he said a statue of Mary "almost keeps watch over the city.”
Mary, Benedict XVI pointed out, is present all over Christian cities in paintings, mosaics and chapels, and through her presence she reminds us that "where sin is abundant, grace is overabundant."
"She is the Immaculate Mother that repeats also to the men of our time: do not be afraid, Jesus has conquered evil, he has conquered over it at the root, freeing us from its dominion."
"How much we need this wonderful news!" the Pope exclaimed, remarking on the contrast of this message to the communication of evil spread daily through the news media to the people.
This negativity, he continued, "isn't completely disposed of and day by day it accumulates. The heart hardens and thoughts are clouded."
"This is why the city needs Mary."
The Holy Father explained that by her very presence "she speaks to us of God, reminds us of the victory of Grace over sin and brings us hope even in the mostly humanly difficult situations." more...
From CNA, "Pope Benedict calls on Catholics to entrust themselves to Mary"
From Zenit, "Benedict XVI Warns of Pollution of the Spirit" and "Today's Feast Called One of the Most Beautiful"
And these documents from Zenit, On Mary's Presence in Rome: "Let Us Hear Her Silent but Pressing Appeal"
On Mary as Mother: "We Can Turn to Her, and Our Heart Receives Light and Comfort"
Update on Defining Mary Spiritual Mother of Humanity: "Could Constitute a Historic Benefit of Grace and Blessing for All"
And from AP via Yahoo! News, "Pope keeps Spanish Steps tradition in Rome"