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Pope impressed by African sense of joy, a source of hope

Catholic World News - November 23, 2011

At his weekly public audience on November 23, Pope Benedict XVI said that the key theme of his weekend visit to Africa had been “the hope that must drive the development of the continent.”

With the release of his apostolic exhortation, Africae Munus, the faithful of that continent “are now called to renew themselves in the faith, in order to serve reconciliation, justice and peace,” the Pontiff said.

Recalling each of the major events of his stay in Benin, the Holy Father said that a visit with needy children, at a home run by the Missionaries of Charity, had left a deep impression. At that home, he said, he had “truly tasted the joy of life, the delight and enthusiasm of the new generations who represent the future of Africa.”

Pope Benedict expanded on that thought to summarize his thoughts about the apostolic voyage, and about the future of the Church in Africa:

In Africa I saw a freshness in the 'yes' to life, a freshness of religious meaning and hope, a holistic vision of reality where God is not confined to that positivist perspective which, in the final analysis, extinguishes all hope.

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