"The feast of Corpus Christi is a propitious occasion to deepen one's faith and love of the Eucharist," the Pope told the 30,000 people gathered in St. Peter's Square today for the general audience.
Speaking in particular to young people, the Holy Father encouraged them to nourish themselves "frequently with the Body and Blood of Christ, our spiritual food."
"You will advance on the path of holiness," he assured them.
To the sick, Benedict XVI said that the Eucharist is their "support, light and consolation in trial and suffering."
The Pontiff also encouraged newlyweds to find in this sacrament "the spiritual energy to live the great love of Christ of which he gave us proof when giving us his Body and Blood."
On Thursday evening, the Bishop of Rome will preside over the Mass of Corpus Christ in the Basilica of St. John Lateran. Some countries celebrate Corpus Christi next Sunday.
The Mass on Thursday will be followed by the procession of the Blessed Sacrament on the Via Merulana in Rome to the Basilica of St. Mary Major.
"I invite the Christian community to join this ceremony of profound faith in the Eucharist," the Pope said, "which is the precious treasure of the Church and of humanity."