In times of doubt and suffering, Christians must not focus on their problems, but instead lift up their eyes to God, who leads them toward the hopeful promise
of great things to come, Pope Francis said on the feast of the Epiphany. “This does not mean denying reality, or deluding ourselves into thinking that all is well. Rather, it is a matter of viewing problems and anxieties in a new way, knowing that the Lord is aware of our troubles, attentive to our prayers and not indifferent to the tears we shed,” the pope said.
The pope celebrated Mass with a little over 100 people, all wearing masks and seated socially distanced from each other, at the Altar of the Chair St. Peter’s Basilica Jan. 6.
In accordance with an ancient tradition, after the proclamation of the Gospel on Epiphany, a singer from the Sistine Choir chanted the announcement of the date of Easter 2021 (April 4) and the dates of other feasts on the church calendar that are calculated according to the date of Easter.
After celebrating Mass, the pope prayed the Angelus in the library of the Apostolic Palace.
In his Angelus address, the pope said that Christ is “the star who appeared on the horizon, the awaited Messiah, the one through whom God would inaugurate his kingdom of love, of justice and of peace. Continue reading
VATICAN CITY — The image of baby Jesus nestled in the manger is a much-needed reminder during the pandemic that God gives the world the gift of hope in troubled times, Pope Francis said.
Meeting with delegations from Castelli in Italy’s Abruzzo region and from Kocevje, Slovenia — responsible, respectively, for the Nativity scene and Christmas tree in St. Peter’s Square — the pope said that Christmas “reminds us that Jesus is our peace, our joy, our strength, our comfort.”
“But, to receive these gifts of grace, we need to feel small, poor and humble like the characters of the Nativity scene. Even in this Christmas, amid the suffering of the pandemic, Jesus — small and defenseless — is the ‘sign’ that God gives to the world,” he said Dec. 11. Continue reading
VATICAN CITY — The purpose of crying out to the Lord in prayer is not to get used to suffering, but to remember that God, and not humankind, is the only source of salvation and consolation, Pope Francis said. Continue reading
VATICAN CITY — True believers do not condemn people for their sins or shortcomings but intercede on their behalf with God through prayer, Pope Francis said.
Just as Moses implored God’s mercy for his people when they sinned, Christians also must act as intermediaries because even “the worst sinners, the wickedest people, the most corrupt leaders — they are children of God,” the pope said June 17 during his weekly general audience.
VATICAN CITY — As countries continue to reel from the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic, Pope Francis offered prayers for the men and women who have been unable to work.
“In these days, many people have lost their jobs, were not rehired, or work off the books. Let us pray for these brothers and sisters of ours who are suffering from this lack of work,” the pope said May 11 at the start of his Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae. Continue reading
Pope Francis greets Bishop Mark O’Toole of Plymouth, England, as he leaves a session of the Synod of Bishops on young people, the faith and vocational discernment at the Vatican Oct. 5. Next to the pope is Cardinal Vincent Nicholas of Westminster, England. Catholic News Service photo by Paul Haring.[/caption]
VATICAN CITY — The Catholic Church needs to communicate the beauty and intelligence of faith to young men
and women without resorting to condescending and aggressive methods, Auxiliary Bishop Robert Barron of Los Angeles told members of the Synod of Bishops.
A “renewed apologetics and catechesis” can help young people who are tempted to leave the church due to convictions
“that religion is opposed to science or that it cannot stand up to rational scrutiny, that its beliefs are outmoded, a holdover from a primitive time, that the Bible is unreliable, that religious belief gives rise to violence, and that God is a threat to human freedom,” Bishop Barron said in his speech to the synod Oct. 4.
“I hope it is clear that arrogant proselytizing has no place in our pastoral outreach, but I hope it is equally clear that an intelligent, respectful, and culturally sensitive explication of the faith (‘giving a reason for
the hope that is within us’) is certainly a ‘desideratum’ (‘desire’),” he said. Continue reading
“God’s forgiveness is felt strongly within us as long as we forgive others” VATICAN CITY — Christians must let go of resentments and forgive those who have wronged them so that they may experience God’s forgiveness, Pope Francis said. This … Continue reading