Benedict XVI traveled in the pope-mobile through St. Peter's Square, greeting thousands of pilgrims attending the general audience.
During the catechesis, the pope said the prayer of early Christians made it possible for the rapid spread of the Gospel. They learned from the Virgin Mary the importance of prayer and recollection.
Benedict XVI -“In all the events of her life, from the Annunciation through the Cross to Pentecost, Mary is presented by Saint Luke as a woman of recollected prayer and meditation on the mystery of God’s saving plan in Christ.”
The pope highlighted how Mary lived through the death of her Son and waited for the Resurrection in silence and dialogue with God. He said she is an example of the need of prayer to proclaim the Gospel.
Benedict XVI - “Let us entrust to her every moment of our own lives, and let her teach us the need for prayer, so that in loving union with her Son we may implore the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and the spread of the Gospel to all the ends of the earth.”
During the audience, the pope blessed the torch of St. Benedict from the Benedictine religious order, which is being carried around Europe as a symbol of unity. The pope also rang the bell from the next International Eucharistic Congress as an invitation to the event that will gather thousands of laypeople in Ireland's capital of Dublin this June.