Begin the Year Seeking Christ, Urges Pope

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VATICAN CITY, JAN. 15, 2006 ( The secret of Christian life lies in seeking and finding Christ, says Benedict XVI.

«To be a disciple of Christ: This is enough for the Christian,» the Pope told the thousands of people gathered today in St. Peter’s Square on a cold winter morning.

Speaking from the window of his study on the first regular Sunday of Ordinary Time of the liturgical year, he explained: «The beauty of this time lies in the fact that it invites us to live our ordinary life as a way of holiness, that is, of faith and friendship with Jesus, continually discovered and rediscovered as teacher and lord, way, truth and life of man.»

The new year is «a time in which we want to renew our spiritual journey with Jesus, with the joy of seeking and finding him incessantly,» said the Holy Father before reciting the midday Angelus.

«The most authentic joy, in fact, is in the relationship with him, having found, followed, known and loved him thanks to a continuous tension of the mind and heart,» he said.

The Master

Benedict XVI, who spoke in six languages, said, «Friendship with the Master assures the soul profound peace and serenity, even in dark moments and the most difficult trials. When faith goes through dark nights, when one no longer ‘hears’ and ‘sees’ God’s presence, friendship with Jesus guarantees that, in reality, there is nothing that can separate us from his love.»

He added that it is «an incessant search and new discovery as Christ is the same yesterday, today and always, but we, the world, history, are never the same, and he comes to us to give us his communion and his fullness of life.»

The Pope expressed the hope that all Christians might «follow Jesus, experiencing every day the joy of penetrating ever more in his mystery.»

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