OF HIS HOLINESS BENEDICT XVI
ON THE OCCASION OF THE AGORÀ
OF ITALIAN YOUTH
MEETING WITH THE FAITHFUL OF LORETO
ADDRESS OF HIS HOLINESS BENEDICT XVI
Square in front of the Shrine of Loreto
Sunday, 2 September 2007
Dear Brother, Pastor of this Church in Loreto,
Mr Mayor of this special Marian City,
Thank you for this Meeting which ends my Visit here to Loreto, where I have been able to meet so many young people and live with them strong experiences of Eucharistic and Marian spirituality.
Of course, there had to be a moment, even a short one, especially devoted to the Community of Loreto. The kind words of your Pastor and your Mayor have expressed your sentiments of esteem and affection for the person of the Pope. I thank you warmly and I offer each one of you my most cordial greetings. Thank you for your welcome! Loreto, as your Mayor said, recalling a few words of my beloved Predecessor John Paul II, is also the house of the Pope, and I must say that here, in these hours, I have really felt at home. Thank you for all that you have done to make worthwhile not only my Visit and that of my collaborators, but also that of the young people of the "Agora".
Actually, you citizens of Loreto are used to such imposing Youth Meetings with the Pope. In this respect, John Paul II's Meeting with European youth in 1995, called "Eurhope", has just been mentioned. I am sure that over and above the inevitable inconveniences they necessarily entail, such religious events, like the daily flow of pilgrims who come from all parts of Italy and from other parts of the world, afford you a precious opportunity to be increasingly developed. They are a constant invitation to grow in faith and devotion to Our Lady. Never forget the great privilege you have of living in the shadow of the Holy House! Take advantage of this to linger in dialogue with Mary, our heavenly Mother, a filial dialogue imbued with faith and love. With your hospitality, therefore, provide visitors and the devout with a daily witness of that motherly love which Mary wishes to dispense in this place to all her children. May the Holy House be the real centre and heart of your city!
In taking leave of you, dear friends, I ask you to give my greetings to your families and the assurance that I will continue to keep Loreto present in my prayers. I will remember each of its inhabitants, especially those who are suffering and are in material and spiritual difficulties. I will remember especially those who are in the hospital, whom I have been unable to visit and to whom I send my affectionate greetings. Once again, I invoke the motherly help of Mary on each and every one of you and, as I renew the expression of my gratitude, I bless you all with affection.
© Copyright 2007 - Libreria Editrice Vaticana
Copyright © Dicastero per la Comunicazione - Libreria Editrice Vaticana