Sunday, July 16, 2006

Pope Praises Our Lady of Mount Carmel

My patron Mary, so to speak.

INTROD, Italy, JULY 16, 2006 ( Benedict XVI dedicated today's first public meeting during his vacation in the Italian Alps to Our Lady of Mount Carmel, highlighting Mary on this feast day as model and intercessor.

Over 5,000 faithful gathered in the field in front of the chalet in Introd in the Aosta Valley -- where the Holy Father is spending a holiday in prayer, study and outings -- for the usual Marian meeting with the Pope.

. . .

Mount Carmel

The Pontiff began his reflection this Sunday by focusing on Carmel: "high promontory that rises on the eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea," whose folds have "numerous natural grottoes, favorites of hermits."

Of these men of God, "the most famous" was "the great prophet Elias," courageous defender of "the purity of the faith in the one true God from contamination by idolatrous cults," he said.

Inspired in the figure of this prophet, "the contemplative order of the Carmelites arose, a religious family that counts among its members great saints such as Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross, Therese of the Child Jesus and Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (in the world, Edith Stein)."

And the Carmelites "have spread in the Christian people devotion to the Most Holy Virgin of Mount Carmel, pointing to her as a model of prayer, contemplation and dedication to God."

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