Benedict XVI in the UK: The Speeches

Pope Benedict XVI visited England and Scotland on an historic four-day Papal state visit from 16 – 19 September 2010. To mark the tenth anniversary of the Papal Visit, we’re re-releasing all the speeches, addresses and homilies given by Pope Benedict XVI as he came to these shores, primarily, to beatify the nineteenth century theologian and educationalist Cardinal John Henry Newman – now Saint John Henry Newman.

Pope Benedict XVI bids farewell to the UK

19th September 2020

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Pope Benedict XVI bids farewell to the UK
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Concluding his historic visit to the UK at Birmingham International Airport, Pope Benedict XVI celebrated Cardinal John Henry Newman’s beatification and heralded a man who “still has much to teach us about Christian living and witness amid the challenges of today’s world.”

“Naturally, my visit was directed in a special way to the Catholics of the United Kingdom… It was especially moving to celebrate with them, here in Birmingham, the beatification of a great son of England, Cardinal John Henry Newman.”

Recorded on Sunday, 19 September 2010.

Prime Minister Cameron thanks Pope Benedict XVI for visiting the UK

19th September 2020

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Prime Minister Cameron thanks Pope Benedict XVI for visiting the UK
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Then-Prime Minister David Cameron thanks Pope Benedict XVI for making an historic State Visit to Britain.

“You have spoken to a nation of six million Catholics but you have been heard by a nation of more than 60 million citizens and by many millions more all around the world.”

Recorded on Sunday, 19 September 2010.

Benedict XVI speaks to the Bishops of England, Wales and Scotland

19th September 2020

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Benedict XVI speaks to the Bishops of England, Wales and Scotland
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Addressing the bishops of England, Wales and Scotland in the Seminary Chapel of St Mary’s College, Oscott, Pope Benedict XVI warmly thanked them for their hospitality over the four days of his visit. He concluded by imparting his Apostolic Blessing to the bishops, clergy, religious and lay faithful of England, Scotland and Wales.

Recorded on Sunday, 19 September 2010.

Archbishop Nichols addresses Pope Benedict XVI at Oscott College

19th September 2020

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Archbishop Nichols addresses Pope Benedict XVI at Oscott College
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Having made Cardinal John Henry Newman a “Blessed” that very morning in Cofton Park, Benedict XVI met with the Bishops of England, Scotland and Wales in the Seminary Chapel of St Mary’s College, Oscott. St Mary’s, often called Oscott College, is the seminary of the Archdiocese of Birmingham and serves the Catholic Church in England, Wales and Scotland.

Archbishop Vincent Nichols thanks Pope Benedict for his visit:

“Holy Father, you give us new hearts for the tasks ahead especially in the wonderful gift of declaring John Henry Newman as a blessed model for us to follow.”

Recorded on Sunday, 19 September 2010.

Pope Benedict XVI declares John Henry Newman “Blessed”

19th September 2020

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Pope Benedict XVI declares John Henry Newman "Blessed"
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The Archbishop of Birmingham, the Most Reverend Bernard Longley, makes the humble request that Pope Benedict XVI beatifies Cardinal John Henry Newman to make him a ‘Blessed’.

“It is right and fitting that we should recognise the holiness of a confessor, a son of this nation who, while not called to shed his blood for the Lord, bore eloquent witness to him in the course of a life devoted to the priestly ministry.”

Recorded in Cofton Park, Birmingham, on Sunday 19 September 2010.

Pope Benedict addresses 80,000 pilgrims at a vigil in Hyde Park

18th September 2020

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Pope Benedict addresses 80,000 pilgrims at a vigil in Hyde Park
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Pope Benedict XVI led a moving vigil of prayer and Benediction in London’s Hyde Park with over 80,000 pilgrims in attendance.

The media at the time described it as “Glastonbury with God”.

“Without the life of prayer, without the interior transformation which takes place through the grace of the sacraments, we cannot, in Newman’s words, ‘radiate Christ’; we become just another ‘clashing cymbal’ (1 Cor 13:1) in a world filled with growing noise and confusion, filled with false paths leading only to heartbreak and illusion.”

Recorded on Saturday, 18 September 2010.

Pope Benedict addresses the elderly at St Peter’s Residence in Vauxhall

18th September 2020

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Pope Benedict addresses the elderly at St Peter's Residence in Vauxhall
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As an 83-year-old man at the time of his visit to the UK in 2010, Pope Benedict XVI clearly felt a particular affinity with the residents of St Peter’s in Vauxhall. He visited the residential home ahead of an evening vigil in London’s Hyde Park.

“Every generation can learn from the experience and wisdom of the generation that preceded it. Indeed the provision of care for the elderly should be considered not so much an act of generosity as the repayment of a debt of gratitude.”

Recorded on Saturday, 18 September 2010.

Pope Benedict XVI greets the people of Wales

18th September 2020

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Pope Benedict XVI greets the people of Wales
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Despite not physically visiting the wonderful country of Wales as his predecessor John Paul II had in 1982, the country and her people were clearly close to Benedict XVI’s heart.

“Through the ages the Welsh people have been distinguished for their devotion to the Mother of God; this is evidenced by the innumerable places in Wales called “Llanfair” – Mary’s Church.”

Recorded on Saturday, 18 September 2010.

Bishop Regan greets Benedict XVI on behalf of the people of Wales

18th September 2020

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Bishop Regan greets Benedict XVI on behalf of the people of Wales
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Bishop Edwin Regan, then Bishop of Wrexham and a fluent Welsh speaker, welcomed Pope Benedict XVI on behalf of the faithful of Wales. He spoke in both his mother tongue and in English.

“On behalf of the Catholics of Wales, and of Wales itself, I am immensely privileged to offer you our most sincere sentiments of loving respect and deep appreciation of all that you do for the building of God’s Kingdom on earth.”

“Dad Sanctaidd, ar ran Catholigion Cymru, a Chymru ei hun, mae hi’n fraint arbennig iawn i mi allu cyflwyno i chi ein teimladau diffuant o barch cariadus, a gwerthfawrogiad dwys o’r hyn rydych chi’n ei gyflawni i adeiladu teyrnas Dduw ar y ddaear.”

Recorded on Saturday, 18 September 2010.

Benedict XVI greets the youth of England, Wales and Scotland

18th September 2020

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Benedict XVI greets the youth of England, Wales and Scotland
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In his message to 2,500 young people gathered in piazza in front of Westminster Cathedral, Pope Benedict XVI encouraged the young Catholics of England, Wales and Scotland to consider their definite purpose.

“I ask each of you first and foremost to look into your own heart, think of all the love that your heart was made to receive, and also love it is meant to give, after all we were made for love.”

Recorded on Saturday, 18 September 2010.

Brentwood’s Paschal Uche represents young people and greets Pope Benedict XVI

18th September 2020

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Brentwood's Paschal Uche represents young people and greets Pope Benedict XVI
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The young east Londoner who represented young people at a gathering in the piazza outside Westminster Cathedral in 2010 is a priest today. In his address, the now ‘Father’ Paschal Uche welcomed Pope Benedict XVI and thanked him for visiting the UK and for inspiring the “saints of the third millennium”.

Recorded on Saturday, 18 September 2010.

Pope Benedict’s homily in Westminster Cathedral

18th September 2020

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Pope Benedict's homily in Westminster Cathedral
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Benedict XVI’s homily in Westminster Cathedral centres on the sacrifice of the Cross – the outpouring of Christ’s blood that is the source of the Church’s life.

Pope Benedict XVI also speaks of the need to share God’s Word:

“One of the greatest challenges facing us today is how to speak convincingly of the wisdom and liberating power of God’s word to a world which all too often sees the Gospel as a constriction of human freedom, instead of the truth which liberates our minds and enlightens our efforts to live wisely and well.”

Recorded on Saturday, 18 September 2010.

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