Joan of Arc, an example for lay people involved in politics, says the pope

Source: FSSPX News

Saint Joan of Arc (1412-1431) is an “example for lay people engaged in politics, especially in the most difficult situations,” Benedict XVI declared during a general audience on January 26, 2011.  Speaking to 3,000 persons gathered in Paul VI Audience Hall at the Vatican, the Supreme Pontiff underscored that the French saint, who had fought against English armies to liberate her country during the Hundred Years War (1337-1453), had been “able to convince people who felt insecure and discouraged”.

Benedict XVI explained that this 19-year-old iconic figure in French history, a lay woman “consecrated in virginity”, was one of “those ‘strong women’ who … fearlessly bore the great light of the Gospel in the complex events of history.”  “One of the most original aspects of this young woman’s holiness,” the pope went on to say, “was precisely this link between mystical experience and political mission.”  “With her luminous witness,” he emphasized, Joan of Arc invites the faithful “to a high standard of Christian living,” and also “to make prayer the guiding motive of our days; to have full trust in doing God’s will, whatever it may be; to live charity without favouritism, without limits,” he explained.

Benedict XVI also recalled that the French saint was “particularly close to St Catherine of Siena, Patroness of Italy and of Europe” and that those two “lay women consecrated in virginity” were “two committed mystics, not in the cloister, but in the midst of the most dramatic reality of the Church and the world of their time”.  (Sources : apic/kna – DICI no. 230 dated February 19, 2011)