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ADDRESS OF HIS HOLINESS BENEDICT XVI
DURING THE VISIT TO THE BIRTHPLACE
OF St JOSEPH FREINADEMETZ

Oies, Val Badia
Tuesday, 5 August 2008

 

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I am deeply moved by this very warm welcome that I have encountered here, and I can only say thank you with all my heart. And I thank the Lord who has given us this great Saint, St Joseph Freinademetz, who shows us the path to life and also is a sign for the Church's future. He is a very modern Saint: we know that China is becoming increasingly significant in political and economic life and also in the life of ideas. It is important that this great country open itself to the Gospel. And St Joseph Freinademetz shows us that faith does not mean alienation for any culture, for any people, because all cultures are waiting for Christ and are not destroyed by the Lord: indeed, [in him] they reach their maturity. St Joseph Freinademetz, as we have heard, not only wanted to live and die as a Chinese, but also wanted to be Chinese in Heaven: thus he identified in spirit with this people, in the certainty that it would open itself to faith in Jesus Christ. Let us now pray that this great Saint may be an encouragement for all of us to live anew the life of faith in our time, to journey towards Christ because Christ alone can unite peoples, can unite cultures; and let us also pray that Christ will give numerous young people the courage to devote their lives totally to the Lord and to his Gospel. However, I cannot say anything other than simply "thank you" to the Lord who gave us this Saint, and "thank you" to all of you for your welcome which shows me that the Church is still visibly alive today and that faith is the joy that unites us and guides us on the path of life.

My thanks to you all!

This was followed by a prayer in Ladin, the Rhaeto-Romance dialect of the Engadine in Switzerland, the Our Father and the Benediction. The Holy Father then said:

Thank you! May the Lord Bless you all!

And he concluded:

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I would simply like to say thank you for coming. I heard that some of you waited for hours: thank you for your patience and your courage. May the Lord bless you all.

And naturally I cordially greet all the German-speaking people present: may God reward you all, may the Lord's Blessing be with you all. May God reward you!

 

Copyright 2008 - Libreria Editrice Vaticana

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