VATICAN RADIO REPORT: October 23, 2013 - Pope Francis held his weekly general audience on Wednesday, dedicating it to Mary as the model of the Church. The public meeting provide pilgrims and tourists visiting Rome with a chance to see and hear the Pope, and also receive his blessing. The general audience of Oct. 23 was held in the open, in Rome’s St. Peter’s Square. It began with aides reading a passage from the Gospel of St. Luke in several languages.
Basing himself on the scripture passage, Pope Francis delivered his main discourse in Italian - summaries of which were read out by aides in various languages, including in English. But first, the aide greeted the Pope on behalf of the English-speaking pilgrims.
…Dear Brothers and Sisters: In our continuing catechesis on the Church, we now look to the Virgin Mary who, as the Second Vatican Council reminds us, is “the model of the Church in the order of faith, charity and perfect union with Christ” (Lumen Gentium, 63). As a daughter of Israel, Mary responded in faith to God’s call and became the Mother of his Son. She teaches us to live a life of faith by her obedience to God’s will and by her unfailing devotion to Jesus and his work. Mary also models the Church’s charity, born of faith, which brings the joy and peace of Christ’s presence to others and to our world. Finally, Mary models the Church’s union with Christ through her constant prayer and participation in the mysteries of his life, death and resurrection. As Mother of the Church, may Mary, by her prayers, bring us ever closer to the Lord, open our hearts to share his transforming and redeeming love, and inspire us to put our firm faith in God’s word, trusting in his goodness and his gracious plan for us and for our world.
Pope Francis then greeted the English-speaking pilgrims in Italian.
… I greet all the English-speaking pilgrims present at today’s Audience, including those from England, Ireland, Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands, India, Japan, the Philippines, Thailand, Guam, Canada and the United States. In a particular way I welcome the Usdnited Kingdom’s All-Party Parliamentary Group on the Holy See, with cordial good wishes for their meetings in these days. Upon all of you, and your families, I invoke God’s blessings of joy and peace! (BLESSING)