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Pope contrasts divine, human approaches to authority

Catholic World News - January 30, 2012

Pope Benedict XVI contrasted God’s authority with man-made authority, during a midday public audience on Sunday, January 29.

Commenting on the day’s Gospel reading, which recounted how Jesus drove out demons, the Pope cited the observation of St. Athanasius that “commanding and driving out demons is not human but divine work.” Jesus does this work not for his own glory but to help men. Indeed, the Pope continued, “the whole life of Jesus is a translation of power in humility.”

"For man, authority often means possession, power, dominion, success,” the Pontiff said. “For God, however, authority means service, humility, love.”

At the conclusion of his remarks, the Pope joined with young members of Italian Catholic Action to read out a message of peace, and released two symbolic white doves from the window of his apartment in the apostolic palace. The ceremony added a moment of humor to the audience, as the two doves promptly flew back inside the papal apartment. "They want to stay with the Pope," a chuckling Pontiff said, as unseen aides chased the doves back out into St. Peter's Square.

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Show 2 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: Justin8110 - Jan. 30, 2012 9:33 PM ET USA

    Maybe the doves know that it is not out in the world where peace can be found but only within and through Christ's only Church.

  • Posted by: koinonia - Jan. 30, 2012 6:07 PM ET USA

    Wise doves. The efficacy of that dove release thing has always been a mystery. If it's traditional at all, it's got to be with a small "t."

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