September 24, 2011. (Romereports.com)
Surrounded by thousands of people, the pope celebrated Mass just outside the Cathedral of Erfurt. He began his homily by reflecting on the past. He talked about the suffering caused by the Nazi and communist regime, but he also focused on the changes that came along in 1989. Benedict XVI
“Here in Thuringia and in the former German Democratic Republic, you have had to endure, first a brown and then a red dictatorship, which for the Christian faith were like acid rain.”
He then went on to highlight the Christian roots of Germany, asking his fellow countrymen to use their liberty for the good of society.
Benedict XVI“We have no wish to hide in a purely private faith, but we want to shape this hard-won freedom responsibly.”
By describing saints as people who change the world, the pope encouraged others to live their life with values.
"The saints as I mentioned show us the great fruitfulness of a holy life, of this radical love for God and neighbor. Saints, even if there are only a few of them, change the world.”
At the end of Mass, the Cathedral's bell rang loud and clear. It's know as “the glorious,” which is actually the largest medieval bell in the world.
The Pope described the bell as a living sign of the region's deep Christian roots and tradition. He went on to say that the bell is something visible and audible that represents the testimony of Christ in today's world.
The pope spent the second day of this four day trip in Erfurt. He will spend the third day in Freiburg.