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Sunday, December 12, 2010
VATICAN: POPE GAUDETE SUNDAY MESSAGE: BE PATIENT
Pope: Advent a time of patience and perseverance
Pope Benedict on Sunday arrived back at the Vatican for the recitation of the Angelus having earlier made a pre-Christmas pastoral visit to the Roman parish of St. Maximilian Kolbe. For many children the third Sunday of Advent is a very special day to be in St Peter’s Square as it is the time when the Holy Father blesses the "Baby Jesus" they will put in the nativity scenes in their homes. On this rather chilly Sunday an estimated 25 thousand people packed into the square which included around 2 thousand children. Greeting them in particular after the Marian prayer the Pope said, "When you place your baby Jesus in a cave or stable, say a prayer for the Pope and his intentions." Before reciting the Angelus prayer Pope Benedict spoke to those present describing Advent as a time that encourages greater use of "that inner toughness, that strength of soul that allow us not to despair, in our waiting for a good that is slow to come, but await it, he said, indeed, prepare for it with confidence". “May these days of preparation for Christmas be for all of us a time of attentiveness to God’s word, genuine conversion and interior renewal.” The Pope also drew inspiration from a passage in the Letter of St. James, which says “Be patient, therefore, brothers, until the coming of the Lord." Referring to this text he underlined the importance of perseverance and patience, virtues he said, that belonged to the regular abilities of our ancestors, but are now less popular in a world that instead exalts change and the ability to adapt to new and different situations.” The Pope then called on people to open their hearts, which, he said, can become fragile by events in daily life, to the Word of God which does not pass and anchors us so as not to go adrift.