Catholic News Agency reports that Pope Benedict's Sunday talk focused on Jesus' Gospel warning that "if you do not convert you will perish in the same way".
"This, then, is the point that Jesus wants to make to his listeners: the necessity of conversion," the pope said.
"True wisdom is understanding the precariousness of life and assuming an attitude of responsibility." That is, he clarified, "doing penance and improving our lives."
All must undertake such penance and conversion, "otherwise, we will perish," the pope said.
This conversion applies not only to individuals but to all society as well, the pope said. "In effect, people and societies that live without ever questioning themselves about these things have the same final destiny: total ruin."
"Conversion, then, though it will not preserve us from problems, will allow us to confront them in a different way," he added. Concretely, this means that conversion "allows us to conquer evil with good, if not always in a material sense, then certainly on the spiritual level."
Conversion also "helps us prevent evil, by defusing some of its threats", the pope said.
"And it allows good to win over evil, maybe not at always at a practical level - often events occur beyond our will - but certainly at a spiritual level. In short: Conversion defeats evil at its very root which is sin, even if it may not always prevent its consequences, the pope concluded, according to AsiaNews.
Latin missal in press
In another story, the Australian reports that Catholic publishers in Rome are preparing new editions of the Latin missal in anticipation of an imminent decree by Pope Benedict that would declare the Latin, or Tridentine, Mass an "extraordinary universal rite".
The vernacular mass would remain an "ordinary universal rite".
Publishers have already sent proofs to Vatican authorities for approval, the Rome newspaper La Repubblica has reported.
All mankind must choose between continued conversion or death, Pope says (Catholic News Agency, 11/3/07)
Pope: Conversion is our most effective answer to evil, punishment the ruin of people and society
Pope ignores protests to restore Latin mass (The Australian, 12/3/07)
"Personal parish" for French Latin Mass Catholics
French clerics warn against return of Latin Mass traditionalists (CathNews, 24/10/06)
12 Mar 2007