Bishop Olivier Schmmitthaeusler urged the faithful on January 2, to imitate the life of the late Pope Benedict XVI and follow his directives for a life of faith.
He was speaking at the memorial mass for the late Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI and Solemnity of Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, at the Queen of Peace Church in Lvea Em district, Kandal province, Cambodia.
"Let us follow the path of love. Willing to sacrifice our lives for the benefit of others in humble hearts. Walking slowly toward God is indeed the perfect happiness,” the bishop said.
The Apostolic Vicar of Phnom Penh Vicariate recalled direction given by the late Pope Benedict XVI to the Catholics to live in a society and have a strong faith.
“First, God is love; second, faith illuminates our lives; third, the truth of our way of life; fourth, only Jesus Christ can save us; and fifth, the power of love can overcome evil and cruelty in the world,” the bishop described.
Bishop Olivier added that the ideas, the life, and the works of Pope Benedict XVI cannot be summarized in a few words.
The ambassadors from Germany and France, the Secretary of State of the Ministry of Cults and Religions, and a large crowd of young and old Catholics attended the Mass.
The bishop recalled the words of the late Pope, "If we want our world to be revived, if we want our world to be truly saved, there is only one way, we must find God again.”
The bishop insisted that if they knew how to welcome God's presence into their hearts, if they knew how to share His love with others, then they could walk to the path of true happiness.
The bishop had received a special gift from the late Pope, appointing him as the coadjutor bishop for the Phnom Penh Vicariate in 2009 and as Bishop of the same Vicariate in 2010.
In January 2013, the Catholic Church in Cambodia received a video message from the late Pope Benedict XVI before he resigned.
His message was for the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council and the 20th anniversary of the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
"He sent the least number of video messages during his tenure as pope. But his latest video message is for the Cambodian church. He pleads with Mary of the Mekong to protect our community and protect our faith," Bishop Olivier confirmed.
Sister Anne Lucie Nguyen Kim Nga, Superior of the Providence sisters in Cambodia, said that the life of Pope Benedict XVI was quiet at the time of his death.
The nun added that they were Catholics, not just outwardly, but in life inwardly with our relationship with God and walking with God for the rest of their lives.
"We thank God for the presence of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, who has worked to help the church walk in the path of God, helping Catholics to know God better through his theology that guides Catholics people to understand God more and more,” said Deacon Vy Samnang at a memorial sermon.
The late Pope Benedict XVI was born on April 16, 1927, in Germany. He had three siblings. He became the 265th Pope on April 19, 2005, and resigned on February 28, 2013, due to his health condition.
He died at the age of 95 on Saturday at 9:34 am (3:34 pm Cambodian time) at the Mater Ecclesiae residence in the Vatican.
During his tenure as pope from 2005 to 2012, he made apostolic visits to 27 European, Latin American, America, African, and East Asian countries to strengthen diplomacy, Christianity, and interfaith relations.
In his lifetime, since studying theology and becoming a theology professor, and becoming the Pope, he had authored 66 books on theology, spiritual life, and Catholic formation. - By Kagnha Keo
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