Sunday, April 12, 2009

Papal Easter Day Mass and Urbi et Orbi Blessing

Some impressions from the Day Mass of Easter which the Holy Father celebrated this morning on St. Peter's Square, and of the Urbi et Orbi blessing which he imparted afterwards from the loggia of St. Peter's Basilica.

For the Mass, the Holy Father wore the vestments of his 80th birthday.

The throne was set up as on Palm Sunday.

Like for the Vigil, the throne of Bl. Pius IX, showing the handing over of the keys to Peter, was used.

The Pope, flanked by Cardinal Deacons Cacciavillan (Protodeacon) and Herranz, reads his Urbi et Orbi message, in which he affirmed:

The resurrection, then, is not a theory, but a historical reality revealed by the man Jesus Christ by means of his "Passover", his "passage", that has opened a "new way" between heaven and earth (cf. Heb 10:20). It is neither a myth nor a dream, it is not a vision or a utopia, it is not a fairy tale, but it is a singular and unrepeatable event: Jesus of Nazareth, son of Mary, who at dusk on Friday was taken down from the Cross and buried, has victoriously left the tomb.

He imparts the blessing, to which a plenary indulgence is attached. As on Christmas, he was in choir dress, wearing the white Mozzetta of Eastertide, as well as a new white Easter stole, bearing his own coat of arms.

This last picture strongly evokes this famous picture of Pope Pius XII imparting the 1952 Easter Urbi et Orbi blessing.

Incidentally, while I was looking for these images, I came across an interesting photo of Cardinal Zen of Hong Kong.

May I take this opportunity to wish all NLM readers a very happy and blessed Easter, in the words of the EF Martyrology: Hac die, quam fecit Dominus, Solemnitas solemnitatum, et Pascha nostrum: Resurrectio Salvatoris nostri Jesu Christi secundum carnem.

(Images Getty/Reuters/AFP via Daylife)

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