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Monday, April 7, 2014

VISIT TO THE ROMAN PARISH OF ST. GREGORY THE GREAT


Vatican City, 6 April 2014 (VIS) – At 4 p.m. the Holy Father visited the Roman parish of St. Gregory the Great, in the Portuense quarter. He greeted faithful and parishioners, and met with children, catechumens, the sick and the elderly. The Pontiff encountered various aspects of life in the area, through organisations such as the association for social integration for the disabled, “Lamp of Wishes”, and the cooperative “The Prow”, which deals with the reintegration into the workforce of ex-detainees and ex-drug addicts. He then visited the House of Charity, a parish structure served by the Carmelite Sisters of Charity and various volunteers. He confessed a number of penitents and celebrated the Eucharist with the faithful.

In his homily, the Pope spoke about resurrection and life, “the Lord's good promise”. “Today I invite you to think for a moment in silence: where is my inner necrosis? Where is the part of my soul that is dead? Where is my tomb? Let us think, just a moment, all of us, in silence. Let us think: what is the part of my heart that can be corrupted, because it is attached to some sin or sins? Remove the tombstone, remove the tombstone of shame and let the Lord say to us, as he said to Lazarus, 'Come forth!', so that all of our soul might be healed, may be resurrected through the love and strength of Jesus. He is able to forgive us. We all need this, all of us. We are all sinners, but we must be careful not to become corrupt! We are sinners, but He forgives us. Let us listen to Jesus' voice that, with the power of God, says to us, 'Come forth! Come out of the tomb you have inside. Come forth. I will give you life, I will make you happy, I bless you, I want you with me”.

The Holy Father concluded by giving pocket-sized copies of the Gospel to the faithful, and he encouraged them always to keep them at hand and to read a little each day, wherever they may be.

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