Ten Commandments are God's recipe for a good life, pope says
By Cindy Wooden
ROME (CNS) -- The Ten Commandments are a gift from God to help people live a correct relationship with God and with others, Pope Benedict XVI said.
"God gave us the commandments to educate us about true freedom and authentic love so that we could be truly happy," he said in a video message played Sept. 8 in Rome's Piazza del Popolo.
The big public square in Italy's capital was the site of the launch of "Ten Piazzas for the Ten Commandments," a project of the Italian charismatic renewal movement, the Italian bishops' conference and the Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelization.
The project -- evenings of reflection, music and dance -- will focus on a different commandment in a different city each month.
Pope Benedict said people may ask what sense the Ten Commandments have today in cultures heavily marked by secularism and relativism.
The answer, he said, is that the commandments are "a sign of the love of God the Father (and) his desire to teach us the correct discernment between good and evil, true and false, just and unjust."
Those who ignore the precepts taught in the Ten Commandments not only move away from God, but they move away from lasting happiness, he said.
"Man left to himself, indifferent to God (and) proud of his absolute autonomy, ends up following the idols of selfishness, power (and) domination," which in turn poison relationships with others, Pope Benedict said.
On the other hand, he said, "accepting the infinite love of God," trusting him and obeying the Ten Commandments "gives deep meaning to one's life and opens a future of hope."
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