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Papal preacher devotes Lenten sermon to St. Leo the Great

April 07, 2014

In his April 4 sermon to the Pope and the members of the Roman Curia, Father Raniero Cantalamessa preached about St. Leo the Great’s contribution to Catholic teaching that Jesus Christ is one divine Person with a divine nature and a human nature.

Father Cantalamessa, a Capuchin Franciscan friar, has served as preacher to the papal household since 1980.

“The whole of the Christian doctrine of salvation is based on” the 5th-century Pope’s teaching, said Father Cantalamessa. “Only if Christ is a man like us can he represent us as one of us, and only if he is also God can his actions have an infinite and universal value.”

The friar added, “We forget that being 'true man,' as the dogma says-- and even being the very perfection of humanity itself-- he possesses the capacity for friendship to the highest degree, which is one of the noblest characteristics of a human being. It is Jesus who wants that relationship with us.”


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