VATICAN CITY, NOV. 5, 2010 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI, who this weekend will visit Santiago de Compostela and Barcelona, wishes to bring with him to Spain a message of humility and charity, said a Vatican spokesman.
“There is an infinite number of beautiful things that can be said about this trip of the Pope to Spain,” said Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, director of the Vatican press office, in the latest episode of the Vatican Television program “Octava Dies.”
Speaking of the Camino de Santiago (“Way of St. James” — St. James is rendered Santiago in Spanish), which the Holy Father will on Saturday, the spokesman said that “it is the destination of many people, who take to the road [to Compostela] in humility and with an attitude of seeking.” He said that the road has been the path of numerous pilgrims “throughout the centuries, who have reflected, prayed, and toiled to rediscover themselves and encounter God.”
“Infinite diverse events of life, with their secret and profound mystery, flow together in the great river of people on the Way. Today the Pope is a pilgrim with pilgrims, as person, as pastor,” Father Lombardi added.
“How many people wander without finding the direction and the goal. Toward Santiago the path of very many has found a star, a goal,” he said. “Together with the Pope we face our paths with trust.”
Work of faith and art
The priest said that the construction of the Holy Family Church is also imprinted by a population that is both humble and numerous.
“It is these people that make it grow slowly with their small contributions and devotion, not the powerful of this world. Gaudí is the soul of this enterprise, but it goes beyond his work, beyond time and in the artistic expressions, also preserving the very powerful inspiration of faith and of art,” he said.
Father Lombardi continued: “So the house grows where the believing people rediscover themselves in the encounter with Christ, with God. However on its outside walls every man, even the nonbeliever, can read the more profound meanings of the human event, universal language of the proclamation of salvation.
“The Pope has wished to come here to pray with the people.”
The spokesman then referred to Benedict XVI’s stop on Sunday in Barcelona to the “Obra Benefico-Social Nen Deu” (social charity God-Child) — which is a diocesan foundation for people with disabilities run by the Franciscan Sisters of the Sacred Heart.
A meeting of this sort “cannot be lacking,” explained the spokesman. “There is no believing community without active love, capable of transforming, of transfiguring suffering into hope and joy.”