On the Mother, Present With the Son

«If We Follow Her … the Virgin Will Lead Us to Him»

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VENICE, Italy, MAY 8, 2011 (Zenit.org).- Here is a translation of the address Benedict XVI gave today before praying the midday Regina Caeli. The Pope was in Venice for a two-day trip to the region.

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Dear brothers and sisters!

At the end of this solemn Eucharistic Celebration, we turn our gaze to Mary, Regina Caeli. With the dawn of Easter she became the Mother of the Risen One and her union with him is so profound that there where the Son is present, the Mother cannot fail to be present. In these beautiful surroundings, gifts and signs of the beauty of God, how many shrines, churches and chapels are dedicated to Mary! In her the luminous face of Christ is reflected. If we follow her with docility, the Virgin will lead us to him.

In these days of the Easter season let us allow ourselves to be conquered by the risen Christ. In him the new world of love and peace constitutes the profound aspiration of every human heart. May the Lord grant to you the inhabitants of these lands rich with a long Christian history, to live the Gospel on the model of the nascent Church, in which “the multitude of those who had come to the faith were of one heart and one soul” (Acts 4:32).

Let us invoke Mary Most Holy, who supported the first witnesses of her Son in preaching the Good News, that she might also today support the apostolic efforts of priests; make the witness of those in religious life fruitful; animate the daily work of parents in the first transmission of the faith to their children; illuminate the path of young people so that they might walk confidently in the way traced by their fathers; fill the hearts of the elderly with hope; comfort the sick and all of the suffering with her nearness; assist the work of numerous laypeople who actively collaborate in the new evangelization, in parishes, in associations, such as Catholic Action, which is so deeply rooted and present in these lands; in the movements, which, in the variety of their charisms and their action, are a sign of the richness of the ecclesial fabric – I have in mind such groups as Focolare, Communion and Liberation and the Neocatechumenal Way, to mention but a few. I encourage everyone to work with the true spirit of communion in this great vineyard in which the Lord has called us to work. Mary, Mother of the Risen One and of the Church, pray for us!

[Translation by Joseph G. Trabbic]
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