VATICAN CITY, FEB 5, 2005 (VIS) – This evening in the Paul VI Hall, members of the community of the Pontifical Major Seminary of Rome participated in their traditional meeting for the feast of their patroness, Our Lady of Trust. During the gathering, the choir and orchestra of the diocese of Rome played a piece inspired by the title of John Paul II’s Apostolic Letter, “Mane nobiscum Domine.”
Archbishop Leonardo Sandri, substitute for General Affairs of the Secretariat of State, read the address prepared by the Pope who followed the ceremony from his room in Rome’s Gemelli Polyclinic.
“For me,” the Pope writes, “you are a reason for consolation, because you represent a privileged sign of the Lord’s love for His cherished Church which is in Rome.”
“‘To contemplate the face of Christ, and to contemplate it with Mary, is the ‘program’ which I have set before the Church at the dawn of the third millennium, summoning her to put out into the deep on the sea of history with the enthusiasm of the new evangelization.’ You have chosen to take these words of mine as the theme for reflection for your feast day.”
The Holy Father goes on to affirm that “in the year of the Eucharist, celebrating Mary means, for you, putting the sacrifice of her divine Son at the center of attention, a sacrifice that becomes sacramentally present whenever Mass is celebrated.”
After recalling Jesus’ words to St John before His death on the Cross: “behold, your mother!” John Paul II writes: “I also repeat to you today: behold, your mother, who must be loved and imitated with complete trust, so that you become priests capable of pronouncing, not once but always, the decisive word of faith: ‘here I am,’ ‘Fiat.’ May the prayer, ‘Mater mea, fiducia mea!’ be the profound and simple synthesis of your days, days you pass contemplating Christ with Mary!”
The Pope concludes his address by expressing this desire to all the young people present, especially to those considering the priestly vocation, to altar boys and parish youth groups. “Dear young people, the Lord passes and calls, be ready to collaborate with Him.”