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Benedict XVI: from the moment of my election I have felt supported by your prayers

By on Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Babies queue for a papal blessing at the general audience today (PA photo)

Babies queue for a papal blessing at the general audience today (PA photo)

Pope Benedict XVI said knowing that Catholics around the world are praying for him has given him strength and confidence since his election seven years ago.

“From the first moment of my election as the successor of Peter, I always have felt supported by your prayers, by the prayers of the Church, especially in the most difficult moments,” he said today at his weekly general audience.

Interrupted by the applause of the estimated 10,000 people gathered for the audience in St Peter’s Square, the Pope told those who pray for him, “I thank you from the depths of my heart.”

Continuing a series of talks about examples of prayer in the Acts of the Apostles, the Pope turned to the story of St Peter’s imprisonment in Jerusalem and his miraculous liberation. The biblical account emphasises how the entire Christian community was gathered for fervent prayers for the apostle while Peter slept in the jail, the Pope said.

The episode, he said, “demonstrates the power of prayer”.

“With constant, trusting prayer,” the Pope said, the Lord frees people from their chains, accompanies them through the dark night, and “he gives us the serenity of heart to face life’s difficulties, including rejection, opposition, persecution”.

“Constant, unanimous prayer is a precious instrument for overcoming the trials that arise in life”, because it is a sign of being united with God and one another, he said.

Pope Benedict said St Peter’s liberation offers the Church today a lesson in the importance of both authentic prayer and unity in prayer.

While the Acts of the Apostles recounts a Christian community facing persecution, the Letter of St James tells of a community in danger because of its internal divisions caused by selfishness – “the dictatorship of one’s desires” – and a lack of prayer, he said.

St James warns the community that their prayers will not be answered if they are motivated mainly by a desire “to obtain what you want” and not what God desires for the good of the community, he said.

Even preaching and teaching about God risks losing its meaning and power to touch hearts and change lives if it is not supported by prayer, which is “a continuous, lively dialogue with God,” the Pope said.

Pope Benedict said every community – “both small ones like the family and large ones like the parish, diocese and the whole Church” – need to remember the importance of being united in prayer.

  • Thomas Poovathinkal

    IN THE CHURCH  OF CHRIST THE LORD IF WE DON’T PRAY FOR YOU OUR POPE FOR WHOM WILL WE PRAY! FOR US YOU REPRESENT CHRIST THE LORD ON EARTH THROUGH ST. PETER THE LORD’S OWN PERSONALLY CHOSEN ONE.

  • Lindi

    We love you and pray for you dear holy Father. You have been truly a rock for us.

  • Nat_ons

    God bless our Pope! I had long been awestruck by Josef Cardinal Ratzinger, with his quiet and all but imperturbable dedication to witnessing what the Faith actually teaches (liked or disliked) .. lovingly, resolutely, intelligently. Already loathed by the worldly-minded and faith-revisionists and media-savant experts, there seemed fewer men less likely to be elected pope let alone to use that fearful, cross-bearing mission to such good effect; I am awestruck still and – if it is possible – even more so as his heaven blessed and counter-intuitive and reviled witness to the Cross takes effect!

  • baige867

    iloveshopper.com