Pope Benedict XVI called Pompeii  “the citadel of Mary and of hope”  in his visit to Pompeii, according to an AP article By ALESSANDRA RIZZO, Associated Press Writer   Sun Oct 19, 12:58 pm ET

The Pope celebrated an open-air Mass in front of the 19th century shrine to the cheers of tens of thousands of faithful.

The pope praised the shrine, dedicated to the Virgin Mary and the rosary, and its founder as a beacon of hope and faith. The town was reborn around the sanctuary, he said, showing “how God transforms the world: by filling the heart of man with charity and turning it into an ‘engine’ for religious and social renewal.”

Benedict called Pompeii the “citadel of Mary and hope.”  

The definition of the word citadel according to “yourdictionary.com” is as follows:

cita·del (sit′ə del′, -dəl)


  1. a fortress on a commanding height for defense of a city
  2. a fortified place; stronghold
  3. a place of safety; refuge

The Bible tells us that the Lord our God, is our refuge, and our fortress, not Mary. The Jewish virgin Mary, was a humble servant, who was used mightily by the Lord, but it ends right there. Mary was a created human being, and a sinner, just like the rest of us. IMPORTANT NOTE: God does not have a mother.

I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. (Psalms 91:2)

My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him. He only is my rock and my salvation: he is my defence; I shall not be moved. In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us. Selah. (Psalms 62:5-8)

I cried unto thee, O LORD: I said, Thou art my refuge and my portion in the land of the living. (Psalms 142:5)

For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; (1 Timothy 2:5)