Pope Benedict XVI in Berlin just a few hours ago.

"To abide in Christ means, as we saw earlier, to abide in the Church as well. The whole communion of the faithful has been firmly incorporated into the vine, into Christ. In Christ we belong together. Within this communion he supports us, and at the same time all the members support one another. They stand firm together against the storm and they offer one another protection. Those who believe are not alone. We do not believe alone, but we believe with the whole Church.

The Church, as the herald of God’s word and dispenser of the sacraments, joins us to Christ, the true vine. The Church as "fullness and completion of the Redeemer" (Pius XII, Mystici Corporis, AAS 35 [1943] p. 230: "plenitudo et complementum Redemptoris") is to us a pledge of divine life and mediator of those fruits of which the parable of the vine speaks. The Church is God’s most beautiful gift. Therefore Saint Augustine also says: "as much as any man loves the Church of Christ, so much has he the Holy Spirit" (In Ioan. Ev. Tract. 32:8 [PL 35:1646]). With and in the Church we may proclaim to all people that Christ is the source of life, that he exists, that he is the one for whom we long so much. He gives himself. Whoever believes in Christ has a future. For God has no desire for what is withered, dead, ersatz, and finally discarded: he wants what is fruitful and alive, he wants life in its fullness. "

To read the Holy Father's addresses and Homilies is a thorough and authentic refreshing  of our knowlege of the Catholic Faith - you won't get it in the mass media. Follow the Holy Father as he makes his way through his fatherland, poor, estranged and wounded Germany, calling her folk back to Christ.And to His holy Church. Follow the Apostolic Voyage and read the texts at :

The Papal Flag at the historic Brandenburg Gate

And please pray for the Holy Father and for the success of his historic mission to Germany.

N.B. I find it difficult to credit the obstructions, mysterious malfunctions and errors which have blighted my efforts to complete this short post, but it is done despite them all . Thank you Lord for the gift of perseverance.


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