Vatican City (Fides Service) – During the General Audience today Wednesday 2 July, Pope John Paul II commented on psalm 145 – “Blessed are those who hope in the Lord” and at the end of the audience he appealed for peace in certain areas of Africa.
The Pope said: “Psalm 145 has its apex in the proclamation of God’s sovereignty over human history. At the end of the Psalm it is said in fact <the Lord reigns forever>. There follows a consoling truth: we are not left alone, the vicissitudes of our days are not dominated by chaos or fate, events are not merely a succession of acts without sense and objective. This conviction leads to an authentic profession of faith in God, celebrated with a sort of litany proclaiming the attributes of love and goodness proper to God”.
Human beings are faced with the choice between two contrasting possibilities: “On the one hand there is the temptation to trust in the powerful adopting their criteria inspired by evil, egoism and pride”, the other path “is the one exalted by the Psalmist with the exclamation: <Blessed the man who has for his help the God of Jacob, who hopes in the Lord his God>. This is the path of trust in the eternal and faithful God. Amen, which is the Hebrew verb of faith, means precisely relying on the Lord’s unfailing support, his eternity and his infinite power. It is necessary to live in obedience to the divine will, to give bread to the hungry, visit prisoners, sustain and comfort the sick, defend and welcome the stranger, care for the poor and the miserable. This is in fact, the same spirit as the Beatitudes”.
At the end of the audience the Holy Father launched the following appeal for peace in certain areas of Africa: “With deep sadness I watch the tragic events in Liberia and northern Uganda. I call for commitment on the part of everyone so that those dear peoples of Africa may once again find peace and security and are not denied the future to which they have a right. I also express my closeness to the local Churches, sorely tried in persons and activities, while I encourage pastors and people to be strong and steady in hope. May this be obtained from divine Mercy by our insistent prayer.” SL (Fides Service 2/7/2003 EM lines 28 Words: 403)