Blessed John Paul II: Another Patron for Europe?

By Anita S. Bourdin

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ROME, JULY 13, 2011 ( With Poland beginning its presidency of the European Union, a Mass organized by the Polish embassy to the Holy See gathered ambassadors in St. Peter’s Basilica and Archbishop Dominique Mamberti celebrated.

The secretary for relations with states in the Vatican Secretariat spoke in his homily Tuesday about the urgency of conversion.

He lamented a «loss of European roots.»

«Blinded by progress and well-being, the men of today are only interested in material goods and forget God, or live as if he didn’t exist,» the archbishop said.

He recommended taking inspiration from the example of St. Benedict, patron of Europe. It was the day after the feast of the saint, whom Benedict XVI had mentioned Sunday in the Angelus address.

Archbishop Mamberti exhorted the Old World to «find in its culture and in its roots the necessary strength for a spiritual and humanist rebirth.»

United Europe

At the end of the Mass, the archbishop and the members of the Diplomatic Corps recollected themselves before the tomb of Blessed John Paul II.

Hanna Suchocka, Polish ambassador to the Holy See, thanked the participants and expressed the wish that the Polish Pope will be considered by all as the «patron of a united Europe able to breathe fully with her two lungs.»

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