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Luke Coppen's Catholic Herald Blog

Pope Benedict: Christ is the centre of the liturgy

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Photo: Pope Benedict pictured during yesterday’s Angelus prayer (AP Photo/Pier Paolo Cito)

In his address before the Angelus yesterday, Pope Benedict reminded pilgrims that the First Sunday of Advent marked the start of the Church’s year.

He said:

The [Second Vatican] Council insists on the fact that Christ is the centre of the liturgy. It is similar to the sun, around which rotate the planets. Around the liturgy rotate the Blessed Virgin Mary – she is the closest – and the martyrs and the other saints that ‘in heaven sing to God the perfect praise and intercede for us’.

This is the reality of the liturgical year seen, so to speak, ‘from God’s side’. And from the side – shall we say – of man, of history and of society? What importance can it have? The answer is suggested properly by the advent journey, which we undertake today.

The contemporary world needs above all hope: It is needed by developing peoples, but also by those economically developed. We increasingly see that we are in the same boat and that we must all be saved together. Above all, seeing so many false securities crumble, we realize that we need a trustworthy hope, and this is found only in Christ, who, as the Letter to the Hebrews says, ‘is the same yesterday, today and always’ (13:8).

The Lord Jesus came in the past, he comes in the present and will come in the future. He embraces all the dimensions of time, because he died and rose, he is ‘the Living One’ and, sharing our human precariousness, remains forever and offers us God’s very stability.

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Written by Luke Coppen

November 30, 2009 at 4:09 pm

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