Thursday, March 29, 2007
The Holy Father presented the penitential service as "an encounter around the cross, a celebration of the mercy of God that each of us can experience personally in the sacrament of confession." "In the heart of every person," there is "thirst for love," the Pope said in the homily. "The Christian cannot live without love. Moreover, if he doesn't encounter true love, he cannot even call himself fully Christian." State of grace Benedict XVI explained that, in approaching the sacrament of confession, "love and the mercy of God move your hearts. … You experience in this way the forgiveness of sins, reconciliation with the Church, and recovery of the state of grace, if you have lost it. "Christ attracts you to himself, to unite himself with each one of you so that, for our part, we learn to love our brethren with that same love." "There is great necessity for a renewed capacity to love our brothers and sisters," the Pope said. He invited the young people "to dare to love in your family, in your relationships with your friends, and also with those who have offended you."