JOHN PAUL II
Easter Monday, 12 April 2004
1. "Regina caeli laetare, alleluia!". In the Easter Season, the traditional prayer of the Angelus is replaced by the hymn of the Regina Caeli that expresses Mary's joy at the Resurrection of her divine Son. Thus, Mary became a model for Christian communities "rejoicing" in the Passover of the Lord, a source of true joy to all believers. Indeed, the Risen Christ is the source of and ultimate reason for this spiritual joy that no shadow can dim. The liturgy of the Octave of Easter echoes it constantly: "Christ has risen as he promised". This is also what we proclaim in the "Regina Caeli", a prayer so dear to popular piety.
Aware of this saving event that changed the course of history, the Church associates herself with the Woman who intimately experienced the passion, death and Resurrection of Jesus. And the Church asks Mary to sustain her faith: "Ora pro nobis Deum": pray to the Lord for us.
2. Dear brothers and sisters, on this Easter Monday, an extension of Easter Day, may each one of us pause by the empty tomb to meditate on the supreme miracle of Christ's Resurrection.
May the Virgin Mary, silent witness of this mystery, strengthen us in our personal attachment to the One who died and rose for the salvation of every human being. May she be our teacher and guide in the faith; may she support us in moments of doubt and temptation; may she obtain for us that inner peace which no one can disturb, because it is rooted in the certainty that Christ is truly risen.
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