Pope urges us to make the most of these difficult times

In the Pope’s Holy Week message, Francis reaches out to those whose lives have changed most because of COVID-19.

In a video message, he speaks of the difficulties and suffering these weeks have brought many people, for those with sick people at home and those who are in mourning.

“I can imagine you in your families, living an unusual life to avoid contagion,” he says.

He also speaks of his appreciation for the “generosity of those who put themselves at risk for the treatment of this pandemic or to guarantee the essential services to society.”

They are “heroes,” he says.

Others Francis is keeping in mind are those facing financial difficulties, those in prison worried about themselves and their families, and the homeless, who have no home to protect them.

“It is a difficult time for everyone. For many, very difficult.”

The Pope says he is aware of the suffering in the world right now and spoke of his closeness and affection to all people.

There are ways we can all help, he suggests.

“Let us try, if we can, to make the best use of this time: let us be generous.”

“Let us help those in need in our neighbourhood.”

“Let us look out for the loneliest people, perhaps by telephone or social networks.”

“Let us pray to the Lord for those who are in difficulty in Italy and in the world.”

We can break through the isolation imposed by social distancing measures, as “thought and spirit can go far with the creativity of love,” Francis says.

We can express it through small acts of kindness and love with those who are suffering, children and the elderly.

He acknowledges that Christians will celebrate Holy Week “in a truly unusual way.”

This week summarises the message of the Gospel, he says: “God’s boundless love.”

“And in the silence of our cities, the Easter Gospel will resound,” he says.

“In the risen Jesus, life conquered death.”

Hope, said the Pope, is nourished by our Paschal faith.

“It is the hope of a better time, in which we can be better, finally freed from evil and from this pandemic,” he said. “It is a hope: hope does not disappoint. It is not an illusion, it is a hope.”

He urged everyone to prepare a better time “in love and patience” with the extra time alone that has been given us.

Closing his message, the Pope asked everyone watching to make “a gesture of tenderness towards those who suffer, towards children, and towards the elderly.”

“Tell them that the Pope is close,” he said, “and pray that the Lord will soon deliver us all from evil.”


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News category: World.

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