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From the Vatican Information Service. . .

Pope John Paul II's Remarks on the Canonization of Edith Stein at Mass and at the Angelus

VATICAN CITY, OCT 11, 1998 (VIS) - In St. Peter's Square this morning, the

Pope celebrated Mass during which he canonized Blessed Teresa Benedicta of

the Cross (Edith Stein, 1891-1942), discalced Carmelite and martyr. In his

homily, he asked that her witness might "reinforce even more the bridge of

mutual understanding between Jews and Christians."

The new saint "is an eminent daughter of Israel and a faithful daughter

of the Church," said the Holy Father. "Together with Teresa of Avila and

Therese of Lisieux, this other Teresa is among the multitude of saints

which honor the Carmelite order."

"From now on, as we celebrate the memory of this new saint (every August

9), we cannot fail to remember from year to year the 'Shoah' (the

Holocaust), that savage plan of exterminating a people, which cost the

lives of millions of Jewish brothers and sisters."

"Out of love for God and humankind," he exclaimed, "Once again. I raise

my voice in a heartfelt cry: May such a criminal initiative never be

repeated against any people, or race, anywhere on earth! It is a plea which

I address to all men and women of good will; to all those who believe in

the eternal and just God; to all those who feel united in Christ, the Word

of God made flesh."

The Pope went on to say that the experience of Edith Stein, "who faced up

to the challenges of an afflicted century like ours, is an example for us


"Sr. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross says to us all: Don't accept anything

as truth if it is without love. And don't accept anything as love if it is

without truth! One without the other is a harmful lie."

John Paul II said that the new saint "teaches us ultimately that love for

Christ passes through pain. ... The mystery of the Cross gradually enfolded

all her life, to the point of impelling her to the supreme offering of

herself. ... Many of our contemporaries would want the Cross to be

silenced. However, nothing is more eloquent than the Cross made silent! The

true message of pain is a lesson of love. Love makes pain bear fruit and

pain deepens love."



VATICAN CITY, OCT 11, 1998 (VIS) - Before praying the angelus today, the

Pope reflected on the Church's newest saint, pointing out that "St. Teresa

Benedicta of the Cross understood that the crib and the Cross were

intimately linked to each other. This inner awareness enabled her to enter

into a deep harmony with the Virgin Mary."

Edith Stein wrote of Mary: "'To be in prayer before God, to love Him with

all her heart, to implore His grace on sinful people offering herself in

reparation for this people and, as a handmaiden of the Lord, being

attentive to His every wish: this was her life'. Edith Stein, also a

daughter of the Jewish people, spoke of Mary" and outlined the way of life

she had chosen.

In remarks after the angelus prayer, the Holy Father said in English:

"Edith Stein stands out as a beacon which casts its light amid the terrible

darkness which has marred this century. In the martyr, St. Teresa Benedicta

of the Cross, so many differences meet and are resolved in peace. ... To

her prayers before God I entrust all who suffer for the sake of justice and

human dignity."

Speaking Polish, John Paul II added: "Thanks to her studies of philosophy

and to the grace of God, she discovered the truth about Christ who, through

the Cross and Resurrection, brought salvation to the world. She adhered to

this truth with all her heart, studied it more deeply through

contemplation, until she experienced it in its fullness, offering her life

in the camp at Auschwitz. 'The world is made up of differences,' she wrote,

'however in the end none of these will remain. Only great love will

remain'. Today these words find their most magnificent confirmation."

ANG/EDITH STEIN/... VIS 981012 (290)


VATICAN CITY, OCT 11, 1998 (VIS) - Following a concert this evening in the

Paul VI Hall to commemorate both Edith Stein and the upcoming 20th

anniversary of his election as Pope, John Paul II greeted those in

attendance, including civil and religious authorities. He had special words

for the Jewish people present and the numerous relatives of Edith Stein

whom, he said, "count among their relatives such a splendid example of a

woman of culture and faith."

The Pope said that the concert made him think "of an expression of Edith

Stein's: ... 'There are circumstances in which we can understand one

another more easily without words'. Music, when it interprets noble

sentiments of the human spirit, does not need words to be understood. It is

a universal language, profound and highly expressive. ... Today's concert

also shows that music can become praise to God."

AC/CONCERT/... VIS 981012 (150)

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