“Our hope is in God, not in the sense of a generic religiosity or a fatalism cloaked in faith.

We trust in God who revealed completely and definitively in Jesus Christ his desire to be with human beings, to share in our history, to guide us all to his Kingdom of love and life.

And this great hope enlivens and at times corrects our human hopes.

Three extraordinarily rich biblical readings speak to us today of this revelation: chapter 24 of the Book of Ecclesiasticus, the opening hymn of St Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians and the Prologue of John’s Gospel.

These texts affirm that God is not only the creator of the universe, an aspect common to other religions too, but that he is the Father who “chose us in him before the foundation of the world...He destined us in love to be his sons through Jesus Christ”, and that for this reason he even, inconceivably, went so far as to make himself man: “the Word became flesh and dwelled among us”.

(Pope Benedict XVI)