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From Rome

Pope visits Venice

Tags: Joy, Suffering, Faith, Evangelization
  Romereports.com. During the pope's two day trip to northern Italy he stopped in the towns of Venice and Aquileia. During Sunday's Mass and the Regina Coeli, Benedict XVI spoke about the challenges of the evangelization.

Benedict XVI: “A traditionally Catholic people can also negatively sense or, almost unconsciously, assimilate the cultural repercussions that wind up insinuating a way of thinking in which the Gospel message is openly refused or surreptitiously hindered.”

Benedict XVI spoke about the importance of being a witness to the Christian faith. He noted that Christians of today often seem like the disciples of Emmaus.

Benedict XVI: “The problem of evil, sorrow, and suffering, the problem of injustice and tyranny, the fear of others, of strangers and of those who come to our lands from afar and seem to threaten who we are, leads Christians today to sadly say: 'We were hoping that the Lord would deliver us from evil, from sorrow, from suffering, from fear, and from injustice.”

The pope said to convert despair to joy, and that Christian conversion is above all, a conversion to joy.

In attendance were around 300,000 people coming from Italy and neighboring countries of Croatia, Slovenia, and Austria.