OPINION


FEATURE


FEATURED CATHOLIC WEBSITE

New pope celebrates Mass, pledges to lead church toward unity


After celebrating Mass with the cardinals who elected him, Pope Benedict XVI pledged that he would lead the church on the path of unity, dialogue and evangelisation.

"I turn to everyone with simplicity and affection, to assure them that the church wants to continue to build an open and sincere dialogue with them, in the search of the true good of man and society," he said at the end of a liturgy in the Sistine Chapel yesterday.

Dressed in light gold vestments, the pope read his four-page Latin message in a clear and forceful voice, paying tribute to Pope John Paul II and outlining the priorities of his own pontificate.

Pope Benedict said that, like his predecessor, he considered the Second Vatican Council the compass for the modern church. In particular, he stressed his commitment to ecumenism and dialogue and said he was aware that "concrete gestures" were sometimes needed to promote breaking through old antagonisms.

At the same time, he said the chief priority for the modern church is to announce Christ to the world.

"The church today has to renew its awareness of the task of re-proposing to the world the voice of the one who said: 'I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life,'" he said.

The liturgy at 9:00 am local time (5:00 pm in Sydney) was broadcast live on giant TV screens in a virtually empty St. Peter's Square. The evening before, some 100,000 people had gathered for the dramatic announcement of Pope Benedict's election and had cheered him at his first public appearance.

The pope said he had been completely surprised at his election, which came on the fourth ballot of the conclave. He said he began his papacy with two emotions: a sense of "inadequacy" and the confidence that God would help him.

Pope Benedict stressed the need for close unity between the pope and the world's bishops. This collegial communion, he said, favors "unity in the faith, on which depends in large measure the effectiveness of the church's evangelizing efforts in the modern world."

He asked bishops to accompany him "with prayers and with advice, so that I may truly be the 'servant of the servants of God.'"

Pope Benedict pledged to make the search for Christian unity a special priority. He called ecumenism a "compelling duty" and said he would "spare no energy" in trying to bring Christian churches together.

"What is most needed is that 'purification of memory' so often mentioned by John Paul II, which is the only thing that can lead souls to welcome the full truth of Christ," he said.

Acknowledging his predecessor's special relationship with young people, the new pope pledged that the church would continue to dialogue with them. He said he intended to travel in August to Cologne, Germany, for World Youth Day celebrations -- a tradition begun by Pope John Paul.

Pope Benedict underlined the importance of the current eucharistic year, also an initiative of the late pope, saying the Eucharist would be at the center of the Cologne festivities and of the Synod of Bishops in October.

The new pope recalled Pope John Paul with great affection and said he felt encouraged by the late pontiff as he began his own papacy.

SOURCE
Pope celebrates Mass, pledges to lead church toward unity, dialogue (Catholic News Service 20/4/05)

MORE STORIES
I know John Paul guides my hand (Daily Telegraph 21/4/05)
Cheers drown ringing of Vatican bells (Daily Telegraph 21/4/05)
Pious man hears the call of destiny (Daily Telegraph 21/4/05)
Traditionalist preaches to converted (Daily Telegraph 21/4/05)
Pope a 'step forward': Germany (Daily Telegraph 21/4/05)
Gravitas and veritas: hard man of the faith (Daily Telegraph 21/4/05)
Predictable and traditional choice (Daily Telegraph 21/4/05)
The Benedict legacy: a nobleman, a victim of poison and a child (London Independent 20/4/05)
A puff of smoke - slowly all was clear (London Independent 20/4/05)
Cardinal Ratzinger elected new Pope (ABC TV 7:30 Report 20/4/05)
Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger elected new pope (ABC Radio AM 20/4/05)
Crowd in Rome rejoices at election of new pope (ABC Radio AM 20/4/05)
Cardinal Ratzinger elected Pope (ABC TV Lateline 20/4/05)
New Pope celebrates mass (ABC News 20/4/05)
Catholics will warm to Pope Benedict XVI: cardinals (ABC Radio PM 20/4/05)
Mixed reactions to election of new Pope (ABC Radio PM 20/4/05)
Catholic Church has new pope (ABC Radio The World Today 20/4/05)
Cardinals quick to come to decision on new pope (ABC Radio The World Today 20/4/05)
Pope Benedict XVI is elected (Caritas Internationalis 19/4/05)
USCCB president congratulates new pope, calls him "open, pastoral" (Catholic News Service 19/4/05)
First clue to new pope will be his first name -- in Latin (Catholic News Service 19/4/05)
New Pope Benedict says 'John Paul left us a Church that is more courageous, freer, younger' (Catholic News Agency 20/4/05)
Pope Benedict lays out vision for pontificate (Catholic News Agency 20/4/05)
Pope Benedict calls on faithful to intensify devotion to Eucharistic Jesus (Catholic News Agency 20/4/05)
Rome mayor: People of Rome salute their bishop with excitement (Catholic News Agency 20/4/05)
Catholic liberals fear exodus from church (The Courier Mail 21/4/05)
'In joy we go forward' (The Courier Mail 21/4/05)
Church and political leaders welcome German Pope Benedict XVI (Ecumenical News International 20/4/05)
Italian newspapers mull significance of papal election (Ecumenical News International 20/4/05)
New Pope Benedict says church unity will be his 'primary task' (Ecumenical News International 20/4/05)
Cardinal: Pope Will Preserve Sex Abuse Law (The Guardian/Associated Press 20/4/05)
Official report on papal election (Independent Catholic News/Vatican Information Service 20/4/05)
We Are Church hopes for peacemaker Pope (Independent Catholic News 20/4/05)
John Paul II guides me: Pope (Daily Telegraph 21/4/05)
US Cardinals Warn Against Snap Judgments on Pope (Reuters 20/4/05)
New Pope Tries to Allay Fears of Rigid Papacy (Reuters 20/4/05)
New Pope promises to reunify Christians (The Age 21/4/05)
Pope Benedict's call for unity (The Australian 21/4/05)
Here come the souvenirs (The Australian 21/4/05)
He may be too old: pontiff's brother (The Australian 21/4/05)
Delight and some dismay as Cardinal Ratzinger gets Vatican white smoke (Irish Independent 20/4/05)
Women grieve papal election (SBS Radio 20/4/05)
Cardinal Ratzinger's Homily in Mass Before Conclave (Zenit 19/4/05 - temporary url)
Pro-life Groups Delighted at the Election (Zenit 19/4/05 - temporary url)
Solemn Inauguration Sunday for Benedict XVI (Zenit 19/4/05 - temporary url)
Youth event to be focus of first trip (Daily Telegraph 21/4/05)
Youth group at papal mass (The Mercury 21/4/05)

Features/Opinion
Formidable intellect who will not bend to modernist principles (London Independent 20/4/05)
A pope who believes it is far better to be right than popular (London Independent 20/4/05)
The boy who became Pope (London Independent 20/4/05)
Sex, condoms, stemcells: Leading challenges that face new pope (Agence France-Presse/Yahoo 20/4/05)
Joseph Ratzinger: a biography (ABC Radio AM 20/4/05)
Pope's election under the microscope (ABC TV Lateline 20/4/05)
Catholic Church strives to remain relevant (ABC Radio The World Today 20/4/05)
Benedict XVI, implementing the Second Vatican Council in a globalised society (AsiaNews.it 20/4/05)
Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger: Relativism - the central problem for faith today (EWTN Library)
New Pope Sells, but Not As Much As Previous (Associated Press/Forbes 20/4/05)
Ratzinger's Views Were Nurtured in Bavaria (The Guardian/Associated Press 20/4/05)
Stroke and age no barrier (Herald-Sun 21/4/05)
Benedict a new style of leader (Herald-Sun 21/4/05)
John L Allen: Hero of church's conservative wing Becomes Pope Benedict XVI (National Catholic Reporter 20/4/05)
Domain game (Sydney Morning Herald 21/4/05)
Benedict XVI: the challenge (Sydney Morning Herald 21/4/05)
The thoughts of Joseph Ratzinger (The Age 21/4/05)
Faith hope and purity (The Australian 21/4/05)
Choice of name reflects moderate aim (The Australian 21/4/05)
The Pope and the Vatican (The (The Tablet special website)
Patty Fawkner SGS: What's in a name? (Uniya Jesuit Social Justice Centre 20/4/05)
Election of Pope Benedict will usher in dramatic clash between good and evil (Spirit Daily)
Priest criticises pope (The Advertiser 21/4/05)
Editorial: Benedict XVI well equipped for papal task (The Australian 21/4/05)
Sandro Magister: Benedict XVI - The Pope and His Agenda (L'Espresso 20/4/05)
Hans Küng: The Result of the Papal Election (Logos Online 20/4/05)
Charles Moore: Man of faith will shine a light in a time of darkness (Sydney Morning Herald/London Telegraph 21/4/05)
Chris McGillion: A bumpy ride ahead under a weaker Pope (Sydney Morning Herald 21/4/05)
Editorial: A new pope but not a new path (The Age 21/4/05)
W.J. Uren SJ: Which Joseph next: the enforcer or innovator? (The Age 21/4/05)
Barney Zwartz, Desmond O'Grady: Is he the 'devil' liberals really know? (The Age 21/4/05)
Father Frank Brennan: Prefect takes up the reins (The Australian 21/4/05)

21 Apr 2005