Pope recommends trust in God, not "external success"
Pope John Paul II has said the believer might be ridiculed by others for trusting in God rather than the values of the world, but this does not affect their experience of interior peace.
The Pope was speaking to the 20,000 people attending Wednesday's General Audience in St Peter's Square.
"The Lord surrounds the faithful with a horizon of peace that keeps out the uproar of evil," he said. "Communion with God is a source of serenity, joy, tranquillity; it is like entering an oasis of light and love."
The Holy Father was reflecting on Psalm 26, which begins "The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom do I fear?"
"The life of the believer is often subjected to tensions and disputes, at times also to rejection and even to persecution," he said. "The conduct of the just man is irritating, because it resounds as a warning to the arrogant and perverse."
Looking refreshed and happy in the warm Rome sunshine, the pope read brief passages from an otherwise long audience address. He spoke slowly and deliberately, though his speech was reportedly slurred.
God Is Source of Peace in a Society Keen on Success, Says Pope (Zenit 21/4/04)
God offers faithful a safe haven from evil and chaos, pope says (Catholic News Service 21/4/04)
John Paul II General Audience, Wednesday, 21 April 2004
Christians are prepared for conflicts, Pope says (Catholic World News 21/4/04)
23 Apr 2004