Pope Benedict returned to Rome for his weekly general audience during which he underlined that proclaiming the Resurrection is a fundamental part of our faith.[display_podcast] This podcast made available from Vatican Radio

Proclaiming the Resurrection

More than 30,000 people gathered this morning in St, Peter’s Square for the Pope’s general audience. The Holy Father, who travelled to the Vatican by helicopter from his residence in Castelgandolfo, focused his catechesis on the joy of the Easter period “which no suffering or distress can cancel, because it is a joy that arises from the certainty that Christ, through His death and Resurrection, has definitively triumphed over evil and death”.

“The astonishing novelty of the Resurrection is so important that the Church never ceases to proclaim it, perpetuating its memory, especially on Sundays, the Lord’s day and the weekly Easter of the people of God”, he said.

“It is therefore fundamental for our faith and for our Christian witness that we should proclaim the Resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth as a real historical event, borne out by many authoritative witnesses. We affirm it forcefully because, even in our own times, there is no lack of people who seek to deny its historical truth, reducing the Gospel narrative to a myth”.

“Of course, for Jesus the Resurrection was not a simple return to His earlier life on earth”, said Benedict XVI. “Rather it was a passage to a profoundly new dimension of life”. This new dimension “concerns the whole human family, history and the universe entire. The event changed the lives of those who saw it with their own eyes; …. and entire generations of men and women over the centuries have welcomed and borne witness to it with faith, … even through martyrdom”.

“With St. Augustine we can proclaim: ‘The Resurrection of Christ is our hope’ and our future”. “It is true”, he went on, “Christ’s Resurrection is the foundation of our firm hope and illuminates our entire earthly pilgrimage, including the human enigma of pain and death. Faith in Christ crucified and risen is the heart of the entire evangelical message, the central nucleus of our ‘Creed’. … In the Paschal mystery the words of Scripture are fulfilled, in other words it is an event that has … its own logic: the death of Christ shows that the word of God really and fully became ‘flesh’, human ‘history'”.

“At Easter”, the Holy Father concluded, “God reveals Himself and the power of the Trinitarian love that annihilates the destructive forces of evil and death”.
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