Pope John Paul II announced that he will be signing a new Encyclical on the Eucharist on Holy Thursday. During meditations before the Angelus in St Peter's Square on Sunday, Pope John Paul began by referring once again to the war in Iraq and asked Mary's intercession for the victims. "Let us invoke with heartfelt and faithful insistence her intercession for peace in Iraq and in very other region of the world." "Today, the fourth Sunday of Lent," said the Pope, "the Gospel reminds us that God 'so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life'. We hear this consoling announcement at a time when disturbing armed clashes are attacking the hopes of mankind for a better future. God 'so loved the world...', affirms Jesus. The love of the Father therefore reaches every human being who lives in the world." "God 'so loved the world that He gave His only Son...' And this is what happened in the sacrifice of Calvary," remarked the Holy Father. "The Sacrament of the Eucharist is the perennial memorial of this supreme sacrifice." He announced that "it is precisely on the theme of the Eucharist that I wished to dedicate the encyclical that, on the occasion of Holy Thursday, God willing, I will sign during the Mass of the Lord's Supper. I will symbolically turn this over to priests in place of the Letter that I usually write to them and, through them, to the People of God, on that occasion." "I entrust this important document to Mary from this moment," concluded John Paul II, "a document that recalls the intrinsic value and importance for the Church of the Sacrament left to us by Jesus as a living memorial of His death and resurrection." Source: VIS
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