VATICAN CITY, JUNE 14, 2009 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI is affirming that we can be sure things can change for the better and we can have hope -- all because love exists.
The Pope said this today when reflecting on the feast of Corpus Christi being celebrated in many countries. He was addressing crowds gathered in St. Peter's Square to pray with him the midday Angelus.
The Holy Father said that the feast of Corpus Christi brings to mind more than its liturgical aspect. It is "a day that involves the cosmic dimension, heaven and earth. It evokes, first of all -- at least in our hemisphere -- this beautiful and fragrant season in which spring finally begins the turn toward summer, the sun shines brilliantly in the heavens and the wheat matures in the fields," he said. "The seasons of the Church -- like the Jewish ones -- have to do with the rhythm of the solar year, of planting and harvesting.
"This dimension comes to the foreground especially in today's solemnity, in which the sign of bread, fruit of earth and of heaven, is at the center. This is why the Eucharistic bread is the sign of him in whom heaven and earth, God and man, become one."
The Pontiff went on to illustrate how the feast of Corpus Domini is "intimately linked" to Easter, Pentecost, and the feast of the Trinity.
He explained: "The death and resurrection of Jesus and the pouring out of the Holy Spirit are its presuppositions. It is, furthermore, linked to the feast of the Trinity, which we celebrated last Sunday. Only because God himself is relation can there be relation with him; and only because he is love can he love and be loved.
"In this way 'Corpus Domini' is a manifestation of God, an attestation that God is love. In a unique and peculiar way, this feast speaks to us of divine love, of what it is and what it does. It tells us, for example, that it regenerates itself in giving itself, it receives itself in giving itself, it does not run out and is not used up."
"Love transforms every thing," the Holy Father affirmed, "and so we understand that the mystery of transubstantiation, the sign of Jesus-Charity, which transforms the world, is at the center of today's feast."
"Looking upon him and worshiping him, we say: Yes, love exists, and since it exists, things can change for the better and we can hope," Benedict XVI continued. "It is the hope that comes from Christ's love that gives us the strength to live and to face every difficulty. [...] We all have need of this bread, because the road to freedom, justice and peace is long and wearisome."
The Pope concluded by considering how Jesus' mother would have received and worshiped the Eucharist.
"We can imagine with what faith and love," he said. "Each time it was for her like receiving the whole mystery of her Son Jesus: from the conception to the resurrection. My venerable and beloved predecessor, John Paul II, called her the 'Eucharistic Woman.' Let us learn from her to continually renew our communion with the Body of Christ, to love each other as he loved us."