February 6, 2013 (Romereports.com)
Since the year 1913
Our Lady of the Pillar has been the patroness and protector of Spain's Civil Guard
. To celebrate 100 years of tradition, a police delegation led by Spain's Minister of Interior, came to Rome to attend the Pope's weekly general audience. In fact, Benedict XVI thanked them for their service.
“I greet in particular the group and the Delegation of the Civil Guard, the military's archbishop, the Minister of the Interior and the Director General of the Corps. I pray that Our Lady of the Pillar, may give you spiritual strength so you may carry out your service with Spain's society.”
At the end of the general audience, the delegation greeted the Pope. In fact in the past, he has even worn the famous military hat these guards wear. This time around the group gave the Pope a gift, which combined Our Lady of the Pillar with their very own trademark.
JORGE FERNÁNDEZ DIAZ
Minister of Interior, Spain
“It is an image of Our Lady of the Pillar, and the actual pillar is supported by a silver 'tricornio' hat. We also gave him a large colored photograph of the time when the Pope actually put on the 'tricornio' hat when a cadet from our Civil Guard gave it to him.”
This meeting with the Pope puts the icing on the Jubilee Year. The Civil Guard started celebrating this anniversary by placing their highest decoration medal before the Image of Our Lady of the Pillar.