Pope Meets a Parish Close to Home

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VATICAN CITY, APRIL 4, 2004 (Zenit.org).- The latest parish of the Rome Diocese to meet with John Paul II didn't have to go far to see him.



On Saturday the Pope received the faithful of St. Anne's, the only parish that exists in Vatican City.

The audience, held in Paul VI Hall, commemorated 75 years of parish life at St. Anne's, established by Pope Pius XI after the signing of the Lateran Pacts, which constituted the creation of Vatican City State.

Entrusted to the Augustinians, the parish "has become an oasis of the spirit, where one can pray and attend liturgical celebrations," the Holy Father explained in his address to the faithful.

St. Anne's Church is located next to St. Anne's Gate, which gives access to the Vatican. Swiss Guards man the gate.

The Pontiff encouraged the endeavors of the various parish groups "dedicated to apostolic and evangelizing activities."

"Together with the commitment to spread the Good News, they offer incessant witness of fraternal charity and care of neediest brothers," said the Pope. He urged the faithful and the priests who run the parish to grow "in spiritual and apostolic drive."