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Pope presides at Mass for recently deceased prelates

November 05, 2012

On Saturday, November 3, Pope Benedict XVI presided at a Mass in St. Peter’s basilica for the repose of the souls of the bishops who died in the past year. In his homily, reflecting on death and eternal life, the Pope said that “the true immortality to which we aspire is not an idea, a concept, but rather a relationship of full communion with the living God.”

Living in Rome, close to the catacombs, “we are aware as in no other place of the profound links with ancient Christianity,” the Pope observed. Visiting the catacombs, he said, “we cross an intangible threshold and enter into communication with those whose past is there.” In the same way, mindful of the communion of saints, the Pope spoke of the pastoral work of the prelates who have died in the past year, saying that “they showed perseverance and vigilance, wisdom and zealous dedication to the Kingdom of God.”

At the Mass the Pope recalled all the recently deceased bishops of the Church, but especially the cardinals who died in the past year: Cardinals Luis Aponte Martinez, Eugenio de Araujo Sales, Fortunato Baldelli, Anthony Bevilacqua, John Patrick Foley, Paul Shan Kuo-Hsi, Carlo Maria Martini, Ignace Moussa Daoud, Rodolfo Quezeda Toruno, and Jose Sanchez.


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