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St. John Paul II’s last Regina Caeli address he never gave

WEB3 JOHN PAUL II FUNERAL LECTOR Black Mamba via wikipedia Giovanni_Paolo_II_0013

Black mamba via Italian Wikipedia

Philip Kosloski - published on 04/03/24

St. John Paul II died on a Saturday evening and prepared the following Regina Caeli address that he would have given on the next day.

While the last few months of St. John Paul II’s life were full of medical issues that eventually led to his death, he was still preparing speeches and homilies.

Some of these speeches he was able to give, but most he was not able to physically proclaim and the last Regina Caeli address he prepared was delivered after his death.

His last Regina Caeli address was for Divine Mercy Sunday and was ultimately“read by Archbishop Leonardo Sandri, Substitute of the Secretariat of State, at the end of the Holy Mass celebrated that day in St Peter’s Square for the deceased Pope.”

St. John Paul II begins his address focusing on the joy of the Easter season and the Gospel passage that is read on the Second Sunday of Easter:

Today the glorious Alleluia of Easter resounds. Today’s Gospel from John emphasizes that on the evening of that day he appeared to the Apostles and “showed them his hands and his side” (Jn 20: 20), that is, the signs of the painful passion with which his Body was indelibly stamped, even after the Resurrection. Those glorious wounds, which he allowed doubting Thomas to touch eight days later, reveal the mercy of God who “so loved the world that he gave his only Son” (Jn 3: 16).

He then shifts his focus to Divine Mercy Sunday:

This mystery of love is at the heart of the liturgy today, the Second Sunday of Easter, dedicated to the devotion of Divine Mercy.

As a gift to humanity, which sometimes seems bewildered and overwhelmed by the power of evil, selfishness and fear, the Risen Lord offers his love that pardons, reconciles and reopens hearts to love. It is a love that converts hearts and gives peace. How much the world needs to understand and accept Divine Mercy!

St. John Paul II ends his address by looking forward to the Annunciation, which that year (as this year) was transferred to the Monday after Divine Mercy Sunday:

The liturgical solemnity of the Annunciation that we will be celebrating tomorrow urges us to contemplate with Mary’s eyes the immense mystery of this merciful love that flows from the Heart of Christ. With her help, we will be able to understand the true meaning of Easter joy that is based on this certainty:  the One whom the Virgin bore in her womb, who suffered and died for us, is truly risen. Alleluia!

His last address is a beautiful testament to his papacy and sums-up his entire ministry. St. John Paul II had a deep devotion to the Divine Mercy devotion and dedicated his entire life to the Blessed Mother.

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