Feast of the Holy Rosary
John Paul II travels to Pompeii
From Reuters | Latest Financial News / Full News Coverage:
"When he came to the address, his voice was initially halting and he skipped some lines, but he read the final remarks strongly and clearly.
'Pray for me in this sanctuary today and always,' he said. The word 'always' was a clear reference to after his death, which the pope has been speaking of more in recent months.
Overall, he appeared better, paced himself as he spoke and waved spontaneously as he was driven through a crowd of some 30,000 gathered before the shrine in the modern part of Pompeii.
On his way to the shrine he passed excavations of the city destroyed by the eruption of Vesuvius in AD 79 and later said old Pompeii still had a message for modern society.
'These ruins can talk. They ask the decisive question of what is man's destiny,' he said.
'Today, just as in the times of ancient Pompeii, it is necessary to proclaim Christ to a society that has distanced itself from Christian values and even seems to have lost its memory,' he said, speaking from a flower-bedecked platform.
He issued an urgent appeal for peace, saying the new millennium had already been 'lashed by winds of war and etched by blood in so many regions of the world.'"