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Stressing evangelization, Pope says goodbye to Portugal

CWN - May 14, 2010

"In Fatima I prayed for the whole world," Pope Benedict XVI said on May 14 as he ended a 4-day visit to Portugal and boarded his return flight for Rome.

The Pontiff began the day on Friday by traveling to Porto, in northern Portugal, where he celebrated Mass in a central plaza. In his homily the Pope urged the faithful to evangelize their society.

"We impose nothing, yet we propose ceaselessly," the Pope said. He insisted that Catholics cannot be passive, but must always seek to bring others closer to God. He said:

We must overcome the temptation to restrict ourselves to what we already have, or think we have, safely in our possession: it would be sure death in terms of the Church’s presence in the world; the Church, for that matter, can only be missionary, in the outward movement of the Spirit.

After the Mass he traveled to the Porto airport, where he was joined by Portugal's President Anibal Cavaco Silva for a short farewell ceremony. "May you live in increasing harmony with one another," the Pope said to the people of Portugal, adding that this was "a prerequisite for genuine cohesion and the only way to address the challenges before you."

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