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Pope John Paul II on The Feast of St. Francis

"No Salvation Outside the Church"

Taken from L'Osservatore Romano

On Saturday evening, 3 October, more than ten thousand religious of the four Franciscan Families, coming from several countries throughout the world, gathered in St. Peter’s Basilica for a prayer vigil on the occasion of the beginning of the year-long celebration of the Eighth Centenary of the birth of St. Francis of Assisi.

At the end of the first part of the solemn vigil, the Franciscans listened to a radio message from the Holy Father, which was simultaneously broadcast in the Cathedral in Assisi

The following is a concluding paragraph of the Pope’s message:

"The mystery of salvation is revealed to us and is continued and accomplished in the Church (cf. Apostolicam Actuositatem, 2; Presbyterorum Ordinis, 22; Gaudium et Spes, 40), and from this genuine and single source, like 'humble, useful, precious and chaste' water it reaches the whole world. Dear young people and members of the faithful, like Brother Francis we have to be conscious of and absorb this fundamental and revealed truth, contained in the phrase consecrated by tradition: 'There is no salvation outside the Church.' From her alone there flows surely and fully the life-giving force destined, in Christ and in His Spirit, to renew the whole of humanity, and therefore directing every human being to become a part of the Mystical Body of Christ."