Immaculate Conception:Pope, Christial Roots of Italy and EU

(AGI) - Vatican City, Dec. 8 - "From their ancient Christian roots, we know that the populace draws nourishment to build their present and future." This was part of the prayer said by Benedict XVI this afternoon in Spagna square, in which he entrusted Rome, Italy, Europe and the world to the Virgin Mary.


He did this by way of a prayer which he wrote by himself and which he read at the foot of the column of the Immaculate Conception, where Pope Karol Wojtyla had kneeled every December 8 in the 27 years of his papacy, and where the new pope has returned for the second time since he was chosen. He was welcomed by thousands of Romans, "trusting pilgrims", who had come as he had "to receive faith and consolation, joy and love, security and peace." "Virgin Mary full of grace," asked the pope, "be a tender and caring mother for the inhabitants of this city, so that an authentic evangelical spirit will animate and direct conduct. Be an ever vigilant keeper of Italy and Europe, so that from their ancient Christian roots the populace will be able to get nourishment to build their present and future.


“Be a provident and merciful mother for the entire world, so that, in the respect of human dignity and the rejection of any and all forms of violence and exploitation, a solid basis will be laid for a civilization of love. Be a mother especially for those most in need of it: for the helpless, the outcasts, for the victims of a society which too often sacrifices man to other purposes and interests. “Give us the courage to say no to the deceptions of power, money and pleasure; to money got by dishonest means, to corruption and hypocrisy, to selfishness and violence. No to Evil, the worst deceiver of this world. Yes, instead to Christ, who destroys the power of evil with the omnipotence of love because only hearts converted to love, which is God, can build a better future for everyone."