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Like fragile earthen vessels

· Benedict XVI recalls St Paul's experience and invites the faithful to trust in the power of prayer ·

A greeting to those taking part in the International Eucharistic Congress in Dublin

Union with God does not distance us from the world. On the contrary, it gives us the strength to really live and do what must be done. He works miracles “through our weakness, our inadequacy for the task”. It only remains for us “not to trust merely in ourselves” but “to work, with the Lord's help... entrusting ourselves to him as fragile earthen vessels”.  The Pope constantly interrupted his reading of the text prepared for the Audience this morning, Wednesday, 13 June. He did so to give even greater emphasis to the help that comes to human beings, fragile – exactly like “earthen vessels” – since they are exposed to the harshest trials, to the greatest suffering, to efforts to ward off the attack of the “messenger of Satan” that “puts our life in danger” and is a “thorn in our flesh”. And – addressing the faithful who took part in the customary General Audience in the Paul VI Hall – the Holy Father presented the Apostle Paul's experience in order to reaffirm the force of prayer “which is not only the breath of the soul”, an opportunity to understand “our own weakness” and to experience “the power of God who does not abandon us, who does not leave us alone but becomes our support and strength”.
It is through convinced prayer that the human being, laid bare in his weakness and insufficiency, succeeds in getting God to draw him up to his own heights where he can experience “the peace, the beauty of his love”, that love which gives him the necessary strength to avoid the snares of the Evil One.

We stand in such great need of this strength today, immersed as we are “in a world in which we risk trusting only in the efficiency and power of human means” and in “situations of aridity, difficulty and suffering”.

Lastly, at his meeting with the faithful Benedict XVI addressed his “affectionate thoughts” and his “greeting and blessing” to the Church in Ireland on the occasion of the celebration of the International Eucharistic Congress, which is taking place in Dublin in these days. It is “an invaluable opportunity”, he said, “to reaffirm the centrality of the Eucharist in the Church's life”.

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Sept. 19, 2019

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