- Posted April 20, 2014 by
Vatican City State
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URBI ET ORBI: Easter Greetings from Pope Francis
"Surrexit Dominus vere et apparuit Simoni." ("The Lord has risen indeed, and he has appeared to Simon!" from Luke 24:34) The deacon proclaims, turning to the Pope at the beginning of the Easter Sunday Eucharist at Saint Peter's Square.
Tens of thousands gathered at the Piazza, overflowing to almost the whole length of Via Conciliazione in order to celebrate the morning mass with the Pope Francis. The space in front of the Basilica was adorned with flowers from the Netherlands. As has been the tradition, the Holy Father presided over the liturgy without any concelebrants. This year, 2014, the Easter celebration of the West coincided with that of the Orient: the gospel was proclaimed in two languages, Latin and Greek, and in place of the homily, there was a singing of the Easter song from the Byzantine liturgy which in ancient times was sung in front of the Roman Pontiff on the day of Easter.
Immediately after the mass and after greeting the people from the popemobile, the Pope delivered from the main balcony of Saint Peter's Basilica (where he was introduced to the faithful as pope) his Easter message. He spoke of the message of the resurrection as a testimony to unconditional and faithful love, a love which is powerful, and gives life and hope. He asks the risen Lord to be with the sick and the oppressed, to put an end to war and violence especially in the places that are now most vulnerable. He concluded with the blessing Urbi et Orbi--to the City and to the World.