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The yes which frees

· At the General Audience the Pope speaks about the prayer of Jesus in Gethsemane ·

Like Christ in the Garden of Olives, we too “should be able to bring to God our labours, the suffering of certain situations, of certain days, the daily commitment to following him... and also the weight of the evil that we see within ourselves and around us”. For Benedict XVI this is the increasingly present teaching of the prayer of Jesus in Gethsemane.

In proposing this teaching to the faithful present in the Paul VI Hall on Wednesday, 1 February, for the weekly General Audience, the Pope stressed that “the human will finds its complete fulfilment in total abandonment” to God. And in this regard he quoted St Maximus the Confessor “since the moment of the creation of man and woman, the human will is directed to the divine will and it is precisely in God's 'yes' that the human will is fully free and finds its fulfilment”. And if because of sin, this “yes” to God is changed to opposition, on the Mount of Olives Jesus brought back the human will to the full “yes” to the divine plan. In practice, “Jesus tells us that it is only by conforming his will to the divine one that the human being arrives at his true height, he becomes 'divine'; only by emerging from himself, only in the 'yes' to God, is Adam's desire, to be completely free, fulfilled”. Because Jesus in Gethsemane transforms the human will into the divine will, causing the true man to be reborn.

In his Catechesis the Holy Father also remembered that in the Our Father prayer, Christians say to  the Lord “thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven”, recognizing that “there is a will of God with us and for us, a will of his for our life”. This will, the Pope stated “must become every day increasingly the reference of our willing and our being”. In this same way, he continued, we recognize “that the 'earth' becomes 'heaven', a place of the presence of love, goodness, truth and divine beauty, only if the will of God is done on earth”. Just as it happened in the prayer of Jesus to the Father on that night in Gethsemane, when “the 'earth' became 'heaven'; the 'earth' of his human will, distraught by fear and anguish, was assumed by his divine will, thus the will of God was fulfilled on earth”.

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