Home » Archive by category 'Vatican News'

Don’t be a ‘bat Christian,’ live with joy in Christ’s light, Pope Francis says

By

Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY — Don’t live the faith as if it were a “nonstop funeral,” Pope Francis said.

Because Jesus isn’t “up there,” faraway, but is close by, don’t be afraid of reaching out to him and experiencing his joy, the pope said April 24 during his homily at Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae, where he lives.

Batman appears at night in the video game “Batman: Arkham City.” CNS file

Some Christians are afraid of basking in Christ’s light and joy, preferring to dwell like bats in the darkness, frightened of believing Christ is by their side, he said.

Jesus wants to bring humanity the “joy of the resurrection, the joy of his presence,” he said.

The pope’s homily reflected on the day’s reading from the Gospel of St. Luke (24:35-48), in which the risen Christ appears before the disciples, who react “startled and terrified,” thinking they are seeing a ghost. Jesus invites them to touch him, overcome their fears and believe he is really alive and in their midst.

The disciples’ fear reflects “an illness” affecting some Christians today, the pope said, according to a report by Vatican Radio.

“We’re afraid of joy. It’s better thinking: ‘Yeah, yeah, God exists, but he’s up there; Jesus is risen, he’s there”’ (at) a bit of distance,” he said.

“We’re afraid of Jesus’ closeness,” which is a source of Christian joy, he said.

This fear explains why there are “so many funeral Christians, right? Whose life seems like a nonstop funeral. They prefer sadness and not joy. They get around more easily in the dark, not in the light of joy,” like nocturnal creatures, who only come out and see at night.

“There are ‘bat Christians,’ who prefer darkness over the light of the Lord’s presence,” who are afraid of joy, afraid of believing Christ is near, he said.

But with his resurrection, Jesus “brings us joy, the joy of being Christian, the joy of following him closely, the joy of taking the path of the beatitudes, the joy of being with him.”

Pope Francis cautioned people against being “defeated” by the cross, thinking everything ended there, that Jesus went his own way and is far away in heaven.

“Many times we are troubled when this joy comes to us, or full of fear, or we think we’re seeing a ghost, or we think that Jesus is just about how to behave: ‘Well, we’re Christians and we have to do it this way,’” he said.

Instead, Christian life must be “a dialogue with Jesus because, this is true, Jesus is always with us, he is always near our problems, our difficulties and our good works.”

He asked people to pray for God’s grace to not be afraid of joy, and that God help them, like he helped the disciples, to open their minds to understand the Scriptures; “to let us understand that he is a living reality; that he has a body; that he is with us; that he accompanies us; and that he is victorious.”

 

The risen Jesus, not money or power, is the source of life, pope says

April 23rd, 2014 Posted in Featured, Vatican News Tags:

By

Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Too often people are fixated on material things, money, power or status — none of which can give life and joy, Pope Francis said.

Christians need to examine their lives with the question the angel asked the women who went to the tomb to anoint the body of the buried Jesus: “Why do you seek the living among the dead?” the pope said.

At his weekly general audience April 23, Pope Francis had the tens of thousands of people gathered in St. Peter’s Square repeat the angel’s Easter question three times. Read more »

Comments Off

Rome official hopeful that Benedict will attend canonizations

April 23rd, 2014 Posted in Vatican News Tags: ,

By

Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Retired Pope Benedict XVI is expected to attend the canonization of Blesseds John XXIII and John Paul II April 27, said Msgr. Liberio Andreatta, head of the Vatican-related pilgrim agency, Opera Romana Pellegrinaggi.

“Never before have there been two popes canonized and two popes living,” he said at a news conference in Rome April 23 to discuss final plans and preparations for pilgrims. “You can imagine their emotions!” Read more »

Comments Off

Easter should last all week, including in your Bible reading, pope says

By

Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY — Trusting that people took his Lenten advice and either downloaded a Bible app or bought a pocket-sized edition of the Gospels, Pope Francis encouraged Christians to re-read the accounts of the Resurrection during Easter week.

Pope Francis walks past flowers as he leaves after celebrating Easter Mass in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican April 20. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

“Remember this week to pick up the Gospels, find the chapters about the Resurrection and read them, a passage from those chapters each day. This would do us good,” the pope said April 21, Easter Monday. At midday on the Italian holiday, the pope led the recitation of the “Regina Coeli,” the Marian prayer used from Easter to Pentecost.

With thousands of visitors gathered in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis stood in the window of the papal apartment he chose not to live in and urged those in the square to let their Easter joy be evident in the way they think and interact with others.

“Let us allow the joyful awe of Easter Sunday radiate in our thoughts, gazes, attitudes, gestures and words,” he said before leading the prayer.

Telling the crowd that they could wish each other Happy Easter all week long, “as if it were just one day, the great day the Lord has made,” he said Christians can learn Easter joy from Mary and the other women who mourned Jesus’ death and were transformed with joy at his rising from the dead.

“Think of the joy of Mary, the mother of Jesus,” he said. “Just as her pain was intimate, so much that her soul was pierced, so, too, her joy was intimate and profound and the disciples could draw from it” like drawing water from a spring.

From Good Friday to Easter morning, Pope Francis said, “she never lost hope. We have contemplated the suffering mother, but at the same time, the mother full of hope. That is why she is the mother of all disciples, the mother of the church and the mother of hope.”

Easter joy is not something fake, he said. “It comes from inside, from a heart immersed in the source of joy.”

Recognizing that with the resurrection, Jesus conquered death and promises eternal life to those who believe, the pope said, Christians are able to shine “a ray of the light of the Risen One on different human situations: on happy occasions, making them more beautiful and preserving them from selfishness; and on sad situations, bringing serenity and hope.”

 

Comments Off

Easter proclaims that love gives life, pope says; share it with others

By

Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis urged Christians to remember how they first encountered Christ and to share his love and mercy with others, especially through acts of caring and sharing.

Proclaiming the good news of Jesus’ resurrection means giving concrete witness “to unconditional and faithful love,” he said April 20 before solemnly giving his blessing “urbi et orbi” (to the city and the world).

Celebrating the second Easter of his pontificate, the pope told at least 150,000 people gathered in St. Peter’s Square and on adjacent streets that evangelization “is about leaving ourselves behind and encountering others, being close to those crushed by life’s troubles, sharing with the needy, standing at the side of the sick, elderly and the outcast.”

Pope Francis prepares to deliver his Easter blessing “urbi et orbi” (to the city and the world) from the central balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican April 20. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

Whatever is going on in one’s life, he said from the central balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica, Jesus’ victory over sin and death demonstrates that “love is more powerful, love gives life, love makes hope blossom in the wilderness.”

Overlooking the square where he had just celebrated Easter morning Mass surrounded by hundreds of flowering trees and bushes and thousands of daffodils, tulips and roses, Pope Francis said Christians proclaim to the world that “Jesus, love incarnate, died on the cross for our sins, but God the father raised him and made him the Lord of life and death.”

In his Easter message, the pope prayed that the risen Lord would “help us to overcome the scourge of hunger, aggravated by conflicts and by the immense wastefulness for which we are often responsible.” He also prayed that Christians would be given the strength “to protect the vulnerable, especially children, women and the elderly, who are at times exploited and abandoned.”

The pope offered special prayers for those facing serious difficulties and threats in various parts of the world: for victims of the Ebola epidemic in West Africa; the victims of kidnapping; migrants and refugees; and for the victims of war and conflict in Syria, Iraq, Central African Republic, Nigeria, South Sudan and Venezuela.

Celebrating the fact that in 2014 Easter fell on the same day on the Gregorian calendar used in the West and on the Julian calendar used by many Orthodox and Eastern Catholics, the pope’s Easter morning Mass included a Byzantine choir singing “stichi” and “stichira,” hymns that in ancient times were sung in the presence of the bishop of Rome on Easter.

In his “urbi et orbi” message, the pope offered special prayers for peace in Ukraine, a country with various Orthodox, Eastern Catholic and Latin-rite Catholic communities. The pope prayed that all sides in the current political tensions would avoid violence and, “in a spirit of unity and dialogue, chart a path for the country’s future.”

The pope’s celebration of Easter got underway the night before in a packed St. Peter’s Basilica.

His Easter Vigil began with the lighting of the fire and Easter candle in the atrium of the basilica; walking behind the Easter candle and carrying a candle of his own, Pope Francis entered the darkened basilica. In the silence and solemnity of the moment, very few pilgrims and tourists disturbed the atmosphere with their camera flashes.

Brian Baker, a deacon and seminarian from the Archdiocese of Atlanta, sang the Exultet — the poetic hymn of praise calling the whole world to rejoice at the resurrection of Christ.

As the bells of St. Peter’s pealed the joy of the Resurrection through the night, torrential rains beat down on Rome.

In his homily Pope Francis, who often tells people to look up the date of their baptism and commemorate it each year, urged people to remember and reflect on the first moment they really recall having encountered Jesus.

Referring to the Easter account from the Gospel of St. Matthew, Pope Francis noted how the women who went to Jesus’ tomb were told first by the angel and then by the risen Lord to await him in Galilee and tell the disciples to go as well.

“After the death of the Master, the disciples had scattered; their faith had been utterly shaken, everything seemed over,” the pope said. Yet they were told to go back to Galilee, the place they first met Jesus.

Returning to Galilee, he said, means re-reading everything – “Jesus’ preaching, his miracles, the new community, the excitement and the defections, even the betrayal — to re-read everything starting from the end, which is a new beginning,” one that begins with Jesus’ “supreme act of love” in dying for humanity’s sin.

Departing repeatedly from his prepared text, Pope Francis kept telling people: “Have no fear. Do not be afraid. Have the courage to open your hearts” to the Lord’s love.

Returning to Galilee, he said, “means treasuring in my heart the living memory” of “the moment when his eyes met mine.”

“Where is my Galilee,” the pope urged people to ask themselves.”Have I forgotten it? Have I gone off on roads and paths which made me forget it?”

Pope Francis encouraged people to ask the Lord’s help in remembering and in telling the Lord, “I want to return there to encounter you and to let myself be embraced by your mercy.”

Pope Francis baptized 10 people at the Easter Vigil; they ranged from a 7-year-old Italian boy to a 58-year-old Vietnamese woman. Four other Italians and one person each from Senegal, Lebanon, France and Belarus also were baptized. As each stepped forward, the pope asked if they wanted to be baptized and waited for their response; he asked one man twice because his response had not been clear. The catechumens bent over the baptismal font and the pope, putting one hand on their heads, used a deep silver shell to pour water over their foreheads.

The pope confirmed the 10 during the liturgy, anointing them with oil and giving each a kiss on the cheek. And, although Pope Francis does not usually distribute Communion at large public Masses, he made an exception for the 10 new Catholics, who received their first Communion during the vigil.

Contributing to this story was Carol Glatz at the Vatican.

 

Comments Off

Pope Francis leads thousands in prayer at Rome’s Via Crucis

By

Catholic News Service

ROME — Seated atop a hillside overlooking Rome’s Colosseum, Pope Francis presided over the nighttime Way of the Cross, joining thousands of people gathered in prayer.

The solemn torch-lit service April 18 gave powerful voice to the many social and spiritual problems facing the world and to the redeeming power of Christ’s sacrifice for humanity.

Thousands gather outside the Colosseum in Rome April 18 for a nighttime Way of the Cross. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

By passing a bare wooden cross from one group of people to the next in succession, those chosen to lead the Way of the Cross acted as visible representatives of the often-hidden injustices still wounding the world.

Two children held the cross as a reflection was read about the plight of sexually abused minors, and two inmates carried the cross during a reflection on the anguish of imprisonment and torture.

As he did last year, Pope Francis remained on the hillside terrace in silent reflection and prayer as thousands of people, many holding candles, attended the ceremony, which was broadcast by more than 50 television networks around the world.

While he offered a very brief impromptu reflection last year at the end of the ceremony, the pope was not scheduled to speak this year.

Each year, the pope chooses a different person or group of people to write the series of prayers and reflections that are read aloud for each of the 14 stations, which commemorate Christ’s condemnation, his carrying the cross to Golgotha, his crucifixion and his burial.

This year the pope picked Italian Archbishop Giancarlo Maria Bregantini of Campobasso-Boiano, a former factory worker, longtime prison chaplain, champion of the unemployed and fiercely outspoken critic of the Italian mafia.

In the meditations, the archbishop, who belongs to Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata, looked at how the wounds and suffering of Christ are found in the wounds and suffering of one’s neighbors, family, children and world.

For the second station, Jesus takes up his cross, the archbishop criticized the global economic crisis’ grave consequences, like job insecurity, unemployment, suicide among owners of failing businesses and corruption.

A laborer and a business leader carried the cross, “which weighs upon the world of labor, the injustice shouldered by workers,” said the reflection, which was followed by a call for people to respect political life and resolve problems together.

For the fourth station, Jesus meets his mother, two former addicts carried the cross as people meditated on the tears mothers shed for their children sent off to war, dying of cancer from toxic wastelands or lost in “the abyss of drugs or alcohol, especially on Saturday nights.”

For the fifth station, Jesus is helped by Simon of Cyrene to carry his cross, two people living on the street carried the cross as a reflection was read about “finding God in everyone” and sharing “our bread and labor” with others.

For the eighth station, Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem, two women carried the cross, as the meditation deplored domestic violence, “Let us weep for those men who vent on women all their pent-up violence” and to weep for women who are “enslaved by fear and exploitation.”

But compassion is not enough, the archbishop wrote: “Jesus demands more.” Follow his example of offering reassurance and support “so that our children may grow in dignity and hope.”

The archbishop’s meditations had equally strong words about the sexual abuse of children and its cover-up.

Two children carried the cross for the 10th station, Jesus is stripped of his garments, as the reflection crafted an image of the utter humiliation of Jesus being stripped naked, “covered only by the blood which flowed from his gaping wounds.”

“In Jesus, innocent, stripped and tortured, we see the outraged dignity of all the innocent, especially the little ones,” the meditation said.

A family held the cross for a reflection on the need for kindness and shared suffering; two older people carried the cross during a reflection on how age and infirmity can become “a great school of wisdom, an encounter with God who is ever patient.”

Two Franciscan friars from the Holy Land carried the cross during a meditation on Christ emerging from the fear of death as a sign how forgiveness “renews, heals, transforms and comforts” and ends wars.

 

Comments Off

Jesus wants everyone to serve others with love, pope says

By

Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY— In the humble act of washing his disciples’ feet, Jesus is showing all Christians how he wants them to serve others with love, Pope Francis said.

“This is the legacy that Jesus leaves us,” and he wants it to be passed down through people’s loving service to others, he said.

Pope Francis kisses the foot of a disabled person at Our Lady of Providence Center during Holy Thursday Mass in Rome April 17. (CNS photo/Tony Gentile, Reuters)

During the evening Mass at a rehabilitation facility on the outskirts of Rome, Pope Francis washed the feet of four women and eight men who are living with disabilities.

Ranging in ages from 16 to 86, nine of the 12 patients were Italian, one was a Muslim from Libya, one was a woman from Ethiopia and one young man was from Cape Verde.

Two sisters helped patients, all of them with limited mobility, remove their shoes and socks.

The pope then knelt on both knees on a small cushion before each person. He poured water from a small silver pitcher over each person’s foot; some feet were greatly swollen due to the individual’s medical condition.

With a white towel, he dried each foot and kissed it, often having to bend onto the floor to reach the feet of those who were completely paralyzed.

Two aides assisted the pope in kneeling and standing back up, which proved increasingly difficult as the 77-year-old pope made his way across the chapel to serve all 12 patients. Yet, before rising, he gave each one of them a long and loving gaze and broad smile.

Jesus’ gesture was like a parting gift and “an inheritance” that he left out of love, the pope said during the Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord’s Supper held at the Father Carlo Gnocchi Foundation’s Our Lady of Providence Center April 17.

“You, too, must love each other, be servants in love,” he said in a brief homily, which he delivered off the cuff.

He asked people to think of ways “how we can serve others better — that’s what Jesus wanted from us.”

Held in the center’s large chapel, which was dotted with bright stained-glass windows, the Mass was the second of two Holy Thursday liturgies over which the pope presided. The first was a morning chrism Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica.

A large number of patients, their relatives as well as the facility’s religious and lay staff, directors and volunteers attended the evening Mass.

Medical personnel and other staff members did the readings while staff and patients, some seated in wheelchairs, provided the singing and music: One person played acoustic guitar, another marked the beat with a triangle.

Msgr. Angelo Bazzarri, president of the Father Gnocchi Foundation, told Vatican Radio April 17 that the pope’s decision to wash the feet of patients with different abilities, ages and religious convictions was meant to reflect the “universal gesture of a God who became man, who serves all of humanity.”

By choosing to visit the rehabilitation center, the pope was showing the kind of “evangelical mercy that he wants to embrace the entire world of suffering,” he said.

Comments Off

Pope to world’s priests: Go out into world and serve with God’s joy and love

By

Priests extend their arms in prayer as Pope Francis celebrates Holy Thursday chrism Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican April 17. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY — A priest is called to be in the midst of his flock, protecting his people, searching for those who are lost and always serving those in need, Pope Francis told the world’s priests.

If a priest wants to overcome those inevitable moments of sadness, exhaustion and boredom as well as discover his true identity, he must head for the exit sign, going outside himself to be with God and his people, he said April 17 during the chrism Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica.

He must also be a dutiful servant who listens to people’s need and builds a church whose doors are wide open, offering refuge for sinners, a home for the homeless, comfort for the sick and God’s word and joy for the young, he said.

Presiding over the first of two Holy Thursday liturgies, Pope Francis blessed the oils that will be used in the sacraments of baptism, confirmation, ordination and the anointing of the sick.

Deacons carried the sacramental oils in large silver urns to the main altar to be blessed by the pope.

Joined by more than 1,500 priests, bishops and cardinals, Pope Francis led them in a renewal of their priestly vows and a reflection on what it means to be a priest, in a homily that was lengthier than usual.

He focused on the meaning of being anointed through ordination, emphasizing that Holy Thursday was the day Jesus shared his priesthood with the apostles by anointing them with “the oil of gladness.”

“Priestly joy is a priceless treasure, not only for the priest himself but for the entire faithful people of God,” the pope said.

He said it’s not an exaggeration, given the “grandeur of the gift granted us” to minister and serve, to say the priest is a very small person.

While “in that littleness we find our joy,” he said, being “little” without God spells danger.

“No one is more ‘little’ than a priest left to his own devices.”

Priestly joy must be sought and rooted in God’s love and it can find protection from evil in prayer to Mary, he said.

Otherwise a priest risks becoming “the poorest of men unless Jesus enriches him by his poverty, the most useless of servants unless Jesus calls him his friend, the most ignorant of men unless Jesus patiently teaches him as he did Peter, the frailest of Christians,” unless Jesus gives him strength in the midst of his flock, he said.

Self-denial, forsaking earthly happiness and giving oneself to others mean the priest “has to seek his joy from the Lord and from God’s faithful people. He doesn’t need to try to create it for himself.”

Nor should the priest be trying to carve out his own identity because “there is no identity and consequently joy of life without an active and unwavering sense of belonging to God’s faithful people,” he said.

“The priest who tries to find his priestly identity by soul-searching and introspection may well encounter nothing more than exit signs, signs that say: Exit from yourself, exit to seek God in adoration, go out and give your people what was entrusted to you.”

The people of God “will make you feel and taste who you are,” he said.

They will also be able “to protect you, to embrace you and to help you open your heart to find renewed joy” during those moments a priest finds himself feeling isolated, gloomy, listless and bored, “which at times overcome us in our priestly life and which I too have experienced,” the pope said.

With his infinite compassion “for all the little ones and the outcasts of this earth, wearied and oppressed like sheep without a shepherd,” Jesus calls people to his ministry, so that he can be present and work “in the person of his priests, for the good of his people.”

Like an attentive servant, the priest “makes the church a house with open doors, a refuge for sinners, a home for people living on the street, a place of loving care for the sick, a camp for the young, a classroom for catechizing children,” he said.

The priest must be wherever there are people in need or searching; he needs to know how to listen, and feel driven by Christ to lift burdens with mercy and encourage hope with charity.

He asked that people pray for vocations so that when young people hear the call to religious life, they have “the stroke of boldness to respond willingly.”

He asked for prayers for the recently ordained, that they never lose the “joy sparkling” in their eyes as they “go forth to devour the world.”

He also prayed for elderly priests and those who have served many years, that they may “gather their strength and rearm themselves, get a second wind.”

 

Comments Off

Vatican reverses ban on writings of late Italian priest

By

Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY — After nearly half a century, the Vatican has dropped its veto on the writings of a popular Italian priest, and his role in the church is being re-evaluated, said the archbishop of Florence.

Father Lorenzo Milani was a heroic figure to many Italians for decades. Born in 1923 to a family of nonbelievers in the central region of Tuscany, he was converted to Catholicism in his late teens and then served as a parish priest in a small town of poor farmers and factory workers. When his book “Esperienze pastorali” (“Pastoral Experiences”) was published in 1958, its progressive tone scandalized many.

Don Milani wrote that the modernization of Italy was bringing “development but not progress,” and that the church had become less important to ordinary people “than the cut of a pair of trousers, a good snooze, making money, having a good time.” The church itself, he wrote, had become more involved in “ritual” than faith.

In December 1958, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith judged the book “inopportune” and ordered it “withdrawn from commerce and not to be reprinted or translated.”

This action has been re-evaluated as based on “contingent situations,” said Cardinal Giuseppe Betori of Florence in an extensive interview with the Catholic weekly Toscana Oggi. Father Milani’s book is being reprinted in recognition of its contribution to the Italian Catholic heritage, “and in particular the heritage of the Florentine church,” said the cardinal, who sent a copy of the book to Pope Francis last November.

“Today the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith tells me that circumstances have changed, and that there is no reason for that intervention to continue,” Cardinal Betori said.

“The book contained no doctrinal deviation, but it was considered too socially advanced to be read by Catholics,” Michele Gesualdi, president of the Don Milani Foundation and former president of the province of Florence, told the online magazine Firenze Post.

Don Milani died in 1967 at age 44. His role in the church is expected be honored at a 2015 national ecclesiastical conference in Florence, which Pope Francis is expected to attend.

 

Comments Off

Thank God for salvation, kiss a crucifix during Holy Week, pope says

By

Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY — Jesus’ resurrection “isn’t the happy ending of a beautiful fairytale, it isn’t the happy ending of a film,” but is the result of the loving intervention of God, who wanted to give humanity hope and salvation, Pope Francis said.

In the middle of Holy Week, Pope Francis encouraged people to pick up a crucifix, kiss it and recite the simple prayer, “Thank you, Jesus. Thank you, Lord.”

Pope Francis greets the crowd as he arrives to lead his general audience in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican April 16. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

At his weekly general audience April 16, the pope said Jesus willingly endured the most humiliating, most painful path to death: betrayal, mocking, being nailed to a cross “like the worst criminal.”

Watching Jesus suffer and die, the pope said, “we see the suffering of all humanity and we find the divine response to the mystery of evil, suffering and death. We often feel horror because of the evil and pain around us and we ask, ‘Why does God allow this?’ It hurts deeply when we see suffering and death, especially when it involves the innocent. When we see children suffering, it wounds our hearts.”

“This week it would do all of us good to look upon a crucifix, kiss the wounds of Jesus,” he said. “He took upon himself all human suffering.”

“We want God, in his omnipotence, to defeat all injustice, evil, sin and suffering with a triumphant victory,” the pope said. “But instead, he shows a humble victory. Humanly speaking, it seems to be a failure, but God is victorious precisely in that failure.”

Jesus’ death “is not an accident,” the pope said. “His death — that death — was already written. Really, we don’t have a full explanation; it is a bewildering mystery, the mystery of the great humility of God.”

During Holy Week, the pope said, Christians should meditate on the suffering of Jesus and recognize, “this is for me. Even if I was the only person in the world, he would have done it. He did it for me.”

“When everything seems lost,” the pope said, that is the moment that God intervenes “with the power of the resurrection,” restoring hope to humanity with a father’s love.

God does the same thing in the lives of everyone who suffers, he said. When suffering seems unbearable and everything is dark, “that is the moment closest to the resurrection.”

“Jesus, who chose to live this life, calls us to follow the same path of humiliation,” Pope Francis said. “At the times in our lives when we cannot seem to find any way out of our difficulties, when we find ourselves in the deepest darkness … at the hour when we experience that we are fragile and sinful, it is precisely then, at that moment, that we should not mask our failure, but open ourselves to God with trust, just as Jesus did.”

Riding around St. Peter’s Square before the audience, Pope Francis picked up two young passengers and allowed the boys to ride in the back of the popemobile until he was ready to begin his catechesis.

A related video has been posted at http://youtu.be/HR5lZ7cw4bI.

Comments Off
Marquee Powered By Know How Media.