Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By

4/8/2009 (6 years ago)

Vatican Information Service

This is the most important week of the year, offering us the chance to immerse ourselves in the central events of Redemption, to relive the Easter Mystery, the great Mystery of the faith

For love He wished to 'empty Himself' and become our brother. For love He shared our condition, the condition of all men and women.

For love He wished to 'empty Himself' and become our brother. For love He shared our condition, the condition of all men and women.

Highlights

By

Vatican Information Service

4/8/2009 (6 years ago)

Published in Lent / Easter


VATICAN CITY, (VIS) - In the general audience, held this morning in St. Peter's Square, the Pope dedicated his remarks to Holy Week. "For us as Christians", he said, "this is the most important week of the year, offering us the chance to immerse ourselves in the central events of Redemption, to relive the Easter Mystery, the great Mystery of the faith".

The Holy Father explained how Jesus "did not wish to use the fact of His being God, His glorious dignity and His power, as an instrument of triumph and a sign of distance" between Him and us.

"For love", the Pope continued, "He wished to 'empty Himself' and become our brother. For love He shared our condition, the condition of all men and women".

Benedict XVI then went on to explain that the Chrism Mass is "a prelude to the Easter Triduum which begins tomorrow". At that Mass "priestly vows pronounced on the day of Ordination are renewed". The ceremony "has particular significance this year because it comes as a kind of preparation for the Year for Priests, which I have called to mark the 150th anniversary of the death of the saintly 'Cure of Ars' and which will begin on 19 June. Also in the Chrism Mass the oil used for the sick and for catechumens will be blessed and the Chrism consecrated", he said.

During Holy Thursday Mass "in Coena Domini", the Church "commemorates the institution of the Eucharist, the priestly ministry and the new commandment ('mandatum novum') of charity which Jesus left to His disciples", the Pope explained. Holy Thursday, then, "is a renewed invitation to give thanks unto God for the supreme gift of the Eucharist, which must be welcomed with devotion and adored with living faith".

Good Friday, the Pope proceeded, is "the day of the passion and crucifixion of the Lord. ... Christ's death recalls the mass of pain and evil weighing upon humanity in every epoch: the crushing weight of our own mortality, the hatred and violence which still bloody the earth today. The Lord's passion continues in the suffering of mankind".

Yet, "if Good Friday is a day full of sadness, it is at the same time the best day on which to reawaken our faith, to strengthen our hope and the courage to carry our cross with humility and trust, abandoning ourselves to God in the certainty of His support and His victory".

Benedict XVI then highlighted how "this hope is nourished in the great silence of Easter Saturday as we await the resurrection of Jesus". On that day "the Church keeps prayerful vigil, like Mary and with Mary, sharing her feelings of pain and of trust in God. Rightly we are advised to spend the whole day in an atmosphere of prayer, one favourable to meditation and reconciliation. The faithful are encouraged to avail themselves of the Sacrament of Penance so that, thus renewed, they can participate in the Easter celebrations".

Referring then to the Easter vigil, "mother of all vigils", Benedict reminded people that "once again the victory of light over darkness, of life over death, will be proclaimed, and the Church will joy at the meeting with her Lord. Thus will we enter the atmosphere of Easter Day".

The Holy Father concluded by inviting the faithful "to enter into the Cenacle with the Virgin Mary, to stand with her at the foot of the cross, to watch over the dead Christ, hopefully awaiting the bright dawn day of resurrection".



Comments


More Lent / Easter

Can you answer these four challenging questions about Lent?

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Take our Lent quiz! See how much you know about the tradition of Lent! Take our Lent quiz, then challenge your friends. See how much you know about this special season in the Liturgical year. The quiz has just a few questions, but will certainly provide a quick ... continue reading


The Way of the Cross continues on Watch

Image of

By Tony Magliano

In his strong identification with the poor and vulnerable, Jesus makes it perfectly clear that when we meet the needs of these least brothers and sisters, we are ultimately serving him. And when we - as individuals, churches, states and nations - do not adequately meet ... continue reading


Take this thought provoking Stations of the Cross survey

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

How familiar are you with the Stations of the Cross? Take the Catholic Online survey now to share your answers to our questions. Your responses will help us serve you better by tailoring content that suits your needs. The survey is short and should take just 1 minute ... continue reading


'God hasn't forsaken me': Church of England to release short films addressing serious topics for Lent and Easter Watch

Image of The Church of England plans to launch a JustPray campaign throughout Lent, with its final video released on Easter Sunday (Shutterstock).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The Church of England is set to launch its latest campaign called the "Psalm 22 project," which will feature stories of former homeless and ex drug addicts who tackled some of life's most difficult trials. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Psalm 22 refers to the ... continue reading


10 important things to consider during Lent Watch

Image of What are our options during Lent? (Shutterstock)

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Every year we give something up for Lent. Sometimes picking what to give up is hard and other times we consider doing something extra to really immerse ourselves in what God has for us - but what are our options? LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Lent isn't just ... continue reading


5 little-known facts about Lent you need to learn this Ash Wednesday Watch

Image of Lent is more than just fasting (Rhoy Cobilla, InterAksyon.com).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Everyone knows that Mardi Gras kicks off the upcoming 40-day Lent, which honors the time Jesus fasted in the wilderness, but did you know there is more to it? LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Recently the Independent released their list of "5 things you might not ... continue reading


Ash Wednesday: 'Seek To Experience God's Presence Within' Watch

Image of

By F. K. Bartels

"You may ask me: 'But, does God exist? And if he exists does he really concern himself with us? Can we reach him?' It is, indeed, true that we cannot place God on the table, we cannot touch him or pick him up like an ordinary object. We must rediscover our capacity to ... continue reading


POPE'S MASS: Ash Wednesday (FULL TEXT: English) Watch

Image of

By Pope Francis, Libreria Editrice Vaticana

The unofficial English translation to Pope Francis' prepared homily for the 2016 Ash Wednesday Mass: The Word of God, the beginning of the Lenten journey, addressed to the Church and to each of us invitations.The first is that of St. Paul: " Be reconciled to God " ( ... continue reading


Pope Francis' special Ash Wednesday message for 'Keep Lent' initiative Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Pope Francis sent out his first audio message for "Keep Lent" over social media. 'Keep Lent' is an initiative of the Prelature of the Pontifical Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii's youth ministry office. According to the Vatican Radio, "The initiative begins on Ash ... continue reading


Fat Tuesday - Mardi Gras Meant to Be More than a Party Watch

Image of Some have tried to argue that this term meant that people should discard their moral faith commitments and for the night and just

By Fr. Randy Sly

One could call this celebration the last gasp of Ordinary time as the Church anticipates the penitential Season of the forty days of Lent. Rich foods are consumed as pilgrims prepare for times of fasting, abstinence, confession and penance. Ironically, carnival ... continue reading


All Lent / Easter News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Isaiah 58:1-9
1 Shout for all you are worth, do not hold back, raise your voice like a ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 51:3-4, 5-6, 18-19
3 For I am well aware of my offences, my sin is constantly in ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 9:14-15
14 Then John's disciples came to him and said, 'Why is it that we and the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for February 12th, 2016 Image

St. Buonfiglio Monaldo
February 12: He was one of seven Florentines who had joined ... Read More