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Rome Reports

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Pope begins new catechesis on prayer, calls for an end to the death penalty during audience

Benedict XVI“With his human heart, Jesus learned to pray from his Mother and from the Jewish tradition, yet the source of his prayer is his eternal communion with the Father; as the incarnate Son, he shows us perfectly how to pray as children of the Heavenly Father.”Speaking before roughly 5,500 people at the Vatican?s Paul VI Hall, the pope said that prayer in a sense irrigated the life of Jesus, by guiding Him throughout the day. He added it?s a perfect example of what people should try to do in their daily lives. Benedict XVI“While prayer is a gift from God, it is also an art learned through constant practice. Jesus teaches us to pray constantly, but also to bear witness before others of the beauty of prayer, self-surrender and complete openness to God.”Afterward, the pope greeted a delegation that promotes the elimination of the death penalty. The group, led by the Sant Egidio Community is hoping to eliminate the death penalty on a global scale. Benedict XVI“I express my hope that your deliberations will encourage the political and legislative initiatives being promoted in a growing number of countries to eliminate the death penalty and to continue the substantive progress made in conforming penal law both to the human dignity of prisoners and the effective maintenance of public order.”The theme of that meeting was “No Justice Without Life.” Among those in attendance was a state representative from Illinois. The state?s governor recently signed a bill to repeal the death penalty. KLH CTV--BN