Blessed John Paul II Thanksgiving Mass

03/05/2011

Blessed John Paul II Thanksgiving Mass News Story
Blessed John Paul II Thanksgiving Mass. Photo: Fr Chris Dixon.

The Mass of Thanksgiving for the beatification of John Paul II was held in St Peter's Square on Monday 2 May. St Madeleine Sophie Barat Kenthurst Parish Priest Fr Chris Dixon, representing the Catholic Diocese of Parramatta in Rome for the Beatification, reports on the first Mass celebrated in honour of the newly Blessed John Paul II.

I had a great spot in St Peter’s Square at the very front of the public section - and I didn’t have to queue to get there!

The Mass of Thanksgiving was quite Polish in presentation, which was fitting in light of the huge number of Poles in attendance. Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, Secretary of State, was the principal celebrant.

After the greeting of peace, Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz, the former secretary to the now Blessed Pope John Paul II, gave a long talk thanking Pope Benedict XIV for speeding up the process of beatification.

Cardinal Dziwisz remembered that in this very square in 1981, Pope John Paul had shed his blood for the cause of Christ when an assassin tried to kill him.

The music for the Mass was truly beautiful and the soloist had a wonderful voice. The Kyrie was very moving, so too the Gloria.

After the readings, Cardinal Bertone in his homily spoke of John Paul II as the shepherd and guide who fulfilled the threefold command of Jesus to Peter: “feed my sheep”.

He also continued the theme of Cardinal Dziwisz in talking about John Paul II's illness, how it crippled him and took away almost entirely his ability to speak and move. He said the Pope saw this as a way of demonstrating that Christ works through human weakness.

After the Mass, the queue formed immediately for people to venerate the mortal remains of Blessed John Paul II.

I joined the queue for veneration in the afternoon, where I prayed for our Diocese and all its people.


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