Pope to ecumenical representatives in Prague

VATICAN CITY — Here is the Vatican text of Pope Benedict XVI’s speech to ecumenical leaders Sunday in Prague:

Dear Cardinals,
Your Excellencies,
Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

I am grateful to Almighty God for the opportunity to meet with you who are here representing the various Christian communities of this land. I thank Doctor Černý, President of the Ecumenical Council of Churches in the Czech Republic, for the kind words of welcome which he has addressed to me on your behalf.

My dear friends, Europe continues to undergo many changes. It is hard to believe that only two decades have passed since the collapse of former regimes gave way to a difficult but productive transition towards more participatory political structures. Continue reading

Pope’s words at the Angelus in Czech Republic

VATICAN CITY — Here is the Vatican’s English translation of Pope Benedict XVI’s talk at the Angelus prayer following a Mass Sunday in Brno, the Czech Republic:

(Before the Angelus)

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

We have come to the end of this solemn celebration, and the midday hour invites us to pray the Angelus. I am pleased to do so here, in the heart of Moravia, Bohemia’s sister territory, a land marked for many centuries by the Christian faith, a land that reminds us of the courageous mission of Saints Cyril and Methodius.

Continue reading

Pope’s homily in Brno

VATICAN CITY — Here is the Vatican’s English translation of Pope Benedict XVI’s homily at a Mass Sunday at the Brno-Turany Airport in the Czech Republic:

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

“Come to me, all who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Mt 11:28). Jesus invites each of his disciples to spend time with him, to find comfort, sustenance and renewal in him. This invitation is addressed in a special way to our liturgical assembly which, in accordance with the ecclesial ideal, brings the whole of your local Church together with the Successor of Peter. Continue reading

Pope’s speech to political leaders in Prague

VATICAN CITY — Here is the Vatican text of Pope Benedict XVI’s speech Saturday to political and government leaders and diplomats at the presidential palace in Prague, the Czech Republic:

Your Excellencies,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am grateful for the opportunity to meet, in such a remarkable setting, the political and civil authorities of the Czech Republic and the members of the diplomatic community. I warmly thank President Klaus for his kind words of greeting in your name. I also express my appreciation to the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra for the musical performance which opened our gathering, and which eloquently expressed both the roots of Czech culture and the outstanding contribution which this nation has made to European culture.

My pastoral visit to the Czech Republic coincides with the twentieth anniversary of the fall of the totalitarian regimes in Central and Eastern Europe, and the “Velvet Revolution” which restored democracy to this nation. Continue reading

Pope’s words after visit to Infant of Prague

VATICAN CITY — Here is the Vatican’s English translation of Pope Benedict XVI’s Italian-language remarks Saturday during a visit to venerate the Infant of Prague at the Church of Our Lady of Victory in Prague, the Czech Republic:

Dear Cardinals,

Your Excellencies,

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Dear Children,

I greet all of you warmly and I want you to know what joy it gives me to visit this Church, dedicated to Our Lady of Victory, where the faithful venerate the statue of the Infant Jesus, known throughout the world as the “Holy Infant of Prague”. I thank Archbishop Jan Graubner, President of the Episcopal Conference, for his words of welcome spoken on behalf of all the Bishops. I offer respectful greetings to the Mayor and to the other civil and religious authorities present at this gathering. I greet you, dear families, who have come in such large numbers to be here with me. Continue reading

Pope’s arrival speech in the Czech Republic

VATICAN CITY — Here is the Vatican text of Pope Benedict XVI’s speech upon his arrival Saturday at the Ruzyne International Airport in Prague, the Czech Republic. The initial and closing lines, delivered in Czech, were translated into English:

Mr President, Dear Cardinals, Brother Bishops, Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

It gives me great joy to be here with you today in the Czech Republic, and I am most grateful to all of you for the warmth of your welcome.

Continue reading

A papal prayer for Memorial Day

MONTECASSINO — Pope Benedict XVI yesterday paid a visit to the Polish military cemetery in Montecassino, Italy. The prayer he recited there for all those who have fallen in any war seems appropriate to share today when the United States marks Memorial Day.

Here is the English translation of the pope’s prayer from the Vatican Information Service:

O God, our Father,

endless source of life and peace,

welcome into Your merciful embrace

the fallen of the war that raged here,

the fallen of all wars that have bloodied the earth.

Grant that they may enjoy the light that does not fail,

which, in the reflection of Your splendor,

illumines the consciences of all men and women of good will.

You, Who in Your Son Jesus Christ gave suffering humanity

a glorious witness of Your love for us,

You, Who in our Lord Christ

gave us the sign of a suffering that is never in vain,

but fruitful in Your redeeming power,

grant those who yet suffer

for the blind violence of fratricidal wars

the strength of the hope that does not fade,

the dream of a definitive civilization of life,

the courage of a real and daily activity of peace.

Give us your Paraclete Spirit

so that the men of our time

may understand that the gift of peace

is much more precious than any corruptible treasure,

and that while awaiting the day that does not end

we are all called to be builders of peace for the future of Your children.

Make all Christians more convinced witnesses of life,

the inestimable gift of Your love,

You Who live and reign for ever and ever

Amen.

Pope Benedict’s remarks during farewell ceremony

VATICAN CITY — Here is the Vatican text of Pope Benedict XVI’s remarks during a farewell ceremony at the Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv: Continue reading

Pope Benedict’s remarks during visit to Armenian church in Jerusalem

VATICAN CITY — Here is the Vatican text of Pope Benedict XVI’s remarks during a visit to the Armenian Apostolic Patriarchal Church of St. James in Jerusalem: Continue reading

Pope Benedict’s remarks during visit to Holy Sepulcher

VATICAN CITY — Here is the Vatican text of Pope Benedict XVI’s remarks during a visit to Jerusalem’s Holy Sepulcher, where tradition holds that Jesus was buried: Continue reading

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