Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Apriul 5, 2010
Mass marks 5 years since John Paul died
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE
VATICAN CITY - Pope John Paul II was a model of untiring love for God and for all men and women, Pope Benedict said as he celebrated a memorial Mass for his predecessor.
"The entire life of the venerable John Paul II unfolded under the sign of this love, this ability to give himself generously without reserve, without measure and without calculation," Pope Benedict said in his homily.
The March 29 Mass in St. Peter's Basilica was celebrated in advance of the fifth anniversary of Pope John Paul's death April 2, because the date fell on Good Friday.
Pope Benedict said Pope John Paul had many of the same traits as the "suffering servant" described in the reading from the Book of Isaiah.
"The servant acts with indestructible firmness, with an energy that does not lessen until he has realized the task he was assigned," the pope said.
"He presents himself with the strength of his convictions and it will be the Holy Spirit that God places in him who gives him the ability to act with meekness and strength, assuring his success in the end."
"That which the inspired prophet says can be applied to our beloved John Paul II: the Lord called him to his service and, entrusting him with increasingly greater responsibility, accompanied him with his grace and his constant assistance."
"During his long pontificate, he did all he could to proclaim justice with firmness, without weakness or hesitation, especially when he faced resistance, hostility and refusal," he said.
Pope Benedict said Pope John Paul was sure about God's goodness and that certainty accompanied him throughout his life and marked the end of his life in a particular way.
"He let himself be used up for Christ, for the Church and for the whole world; his was a suffering lived for love and with love until the very end," Pope Benedict said.
Pope Benedict also read a paragraph of his homily in Polish, urging the Polish people to transform their pride in Pope John Paul into a commitment to following his example of faith, hope and love.
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