CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy, SEPT. 21, 2003 ( Contemplation of the luminous mysteries of Jesus' life reveals the face of God, says John Paul II.

At today's meeting with pilgrims before the praying of the Angelus, the Pope continued his spiritual preparation for his pilgrimage to the Shrine of Pompeii, near Naples, on Oct. 7.

The Holy Father proposed the luminous mysteries when he convoked the Year of the Rosary last October. That year ends this Oct. 19.

These mysteries of Christ's life, which complement the traditional joyful, sorrowful and glorious mysteries, present key moments in Jesus' public life: his baptism, the wedding of Cana, the proclamation of the Kingdom, the transfiguration on Mount Tabor, and the institution of the Eucharist.

They "are instances of revelation; indeed, luminous mysteries, which reflect the splendor of the divine nature of God in Jesus Christ," the Pope told the pilgrims gathered at the papal summer residence.

"It was the time when Jesus, with the power of the word and works, revealed fully the face of the heavenly Father, inaugurating his Kingdom of love, justice and peace," he said.

Noting that the rosary proposes the contemplation of the love of Christ with the eyes of the Blessed Virgin, the papal meditation focused on the second mystery, the wedding at Cana, where Mary's presence is more evident.

"It is she, in fact, who points out to her Son that there is no more wine; and when he replied that 'his hour' had not yet come, she insists with maternal urgency, saying to the servants: 'Do whatever he tells you,'" the Pope recalled.

"In this way she shows that she intuits more than anyone else the profound intentions of Jesus. She knows him 'heart to heart' as, from the beginning, she kept and pondered every gesture and word of his," he added.

The "Virgin is the first and principal teacher of Christian prayer," he said. "In her school one learns to contemplate the face of the Lord, to assimilate his sentiments and accept his values with generous consistency."

The papal meditation ended with an exhortation: "In these last weeks of the Year of the Rosary, let us feel ourselves more united than ever in reciting the holy rosary, in a particular way for families and for peace in the world."