Benedict Remembers His Predecessor

Expresses Hope That Poles Will Be Strengthened by His Intercession

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VATICAN CITY, MAY 3, 2012 ( Benedict XVI remembered his beloved predecessor on Wednesday, speaking at the end of the general audience to Polish pilgrims, many of whom were in Rome for the first anniversary of John Paul II's beatification.

The Polish Pontiff was beatified last May 1.

The Holy Father told the pilgrims that he rejoiced in their "numerous presence in Rome on the occasion of the first anniversary of the beatification of John Paul II."

"May the witness of his life, his teaching and his love for the homeland remain your particular heritage," Benedict told them. "May you be strengthened by his heavenly intercession; may you be faithful to God, to the Cross and to the Holy Gospel. I bless you from the heart. Praised be Jesus Christ."