Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of July 16, 2007
Smith sees pallium liturgy as celebration of communion
Edmonton archbishop takes parents to meet Pope Benedict
By GLEN ARGAN
"It was the one chance I've had to concelebrate Mass with the holy father at St. Peter's."
"May this pallium be for you a symbol of unity and a sign of communion with the Apostolic See," the pope said as the archbishops knelt before him.
The pallium is a liturgical vestment worn by archbishops to symbolize their communion with the papacy.
During his homily, the pope greeted a three-member delegation representing Orthodox Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople. Each year the pope and the patriarch send official delegations to the feast day celebrations of each other's patron saints.
Smith was accompanied to Rome by his parents, Don and Anne Marie. The day following the pallium Mass, the archbishops had an audience with Pope Benedict and each could bring two people with him.
Naturally, Smith took his parents.
"That was a wonderful moment and a wonderful moment for them. The pope received them very warmly."
- CNS photo/Alessia Giulani, Catholic Press photo
Archbishop Gerard Pettipas of Grouard-McLennan kisses Pope Benedict's hand after the pontiff presented the pallium to him during Mass in St. Peter's Basilica on June 29.
They also were received at a special dinner for the archbishops hosted by Canada's ambassador to the Holy See, Donald Smith.
The pope's feast day homily focused on St. Peter's profession of faith in Jesus as Christ, son of the living God.
The pope said that in St. Matthew's Gospel, immediately after Peter proclaimed his faith in Christ, Jesus said he would build his Church on Peter. That made it clear that Peter's profession of faith "is inseparable from the pastoral task entrusted to him."
In asking the disciples who the crowd thinks he is, then who they think he is, "Jesus invites them to make a choice that can distinguish them from the crowd so they become the community of believers in him, his family, the beginnings of the Church," the pope said.
"There are two ways of seeing and knowing Jesus: one - that of the crowd - is more superficial; the other - that of the disciples - is more penetrating and authentic," he said.
The crowd thinks Jesus is a prophet, the pope said. "This is not false, but it is not enough. It is inadequate."
Even today, the pope said, people recognize Jesus' "spiritual and moral stature and his influence on human history, comparing him to Buddha, Confucius, Socrates and other wise and great historic personalities.
"But they do not reach the point of recognizing his uniqueness."
Because he truly is God incarnate and because he suffered, died and rose from the dead, Jesus is more than a prophet, Pope Benedict said: He is the one saviour of all humanity.
Reciting the Angelus after Mass, Pope Benedict told the crowd in St. Peter's Square, "Let us continue to support these archbishops and sustain them with our prayers as they strive to be zealous Christian leaders."
He also said the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul is an occasion "to pray intensely and act with conviction for the cause of the unity of all Christ's disciples."
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