Pope in New York City … Blesses Ground Zero … Pope Benedict XVI Takes Manhattan and then Yankee Stadium
Pope Benedict XVI first took Manhattan as he blessed the ground at Ground Zero and provided hope and comfort to family members of those that lost loved ones on 9/11. Then he hit a grand slam out of the park as Pope Benedict XVI inspired all in the House that Ruth built as Yankee Stadium was transformed into a beacon of hope.
FNC: April 20: Pope Benedict XVI attends a memorial service at Ground Zero in New York.
Pope Benedict XVI blessed “Ground Zero” and brought a message of peace and hope to a sight more known for its violence and pain from that fateful morning on September 11, 2001. Read the full transcript HERE. One did not have to be a catholic to be moved and inspired by Pope Benedict XVI’s words. One only needed to be a Christian, Jew or Muslim searching for God of any religion in a peaceful manner to brought to profound joy and peace by the words on Pope Benedict XVI. Do not ever forget where true hope is derived from.
Addressing a group that including survivors, clergy and public officials, he acknowledged the many faiths of the victims at the “scene of incredible violence and pain.”
The pope also prayed for “those who suffered death, injury and loss” in the attacks at the Pentagon and in the crash of United Airlines Flight 93 in Shanksville, Pa. More than 2,900 people were killed in the four crashes of the airliners hijacked by al-Qaida.
“God of peace, bring your peace to our violent world,” the pope prayed on a chilly, overcast morning. “Turn to your way of love those whose hearts and minds are consumed with hatred.”
Benedict invited 24 people with ties to ground zero to join him: survivors, relatives of victims and four rescue workers. He greeted each member of the group individually as a string quartet played in the background. In his prayer, he also remembered those who, “because of their presence here that day, suffer from injuries and illness.” (AP News)
Benedict praised the United States as a land of religious liberty, and urged US Catholics to overcome differences and build on the foundation of the church left by their forebears, many of them “immigrants whose traditions have so enriched the Church in America.”
“Today’s celebration is … a summons to move forward with firm resolve to use wisely the blessings of freedom, in order to build a future of hope for coming generations.”
Chang W. Lee/The New York Times
Pope Benedict XVI waves to the crowd as he departs in the popemobile after celebrating a Mass at Yankee Stadium.
Pope’s Homily at Yankee Stadium (read the entire Homily here)
Our celebration today is also a sign of the impressive growth which God has given to the Church in your country in the past two hundred years. From a small flock like that described in the first reading, the Church in America has been built up in fidelity to the twin commandment of love of God and love of neighbor. In this land of freedom and opportunity, the Church has united a widely diverse flock in the profession of the faith and, through her many educational, charitable and social works, has also contributed significantly to the growth of American society as a whole.