Vatican City, 11 June 2014 (VIS) – Due to the hot weather in Rome today, Pope Francis chose to greet the sick in the Paul VI Hall before the general audience instead of doing so after his catechesis in St. Peter's Square. “We thought it was better for you to stay here in peace, where it is a little cooler, and not under the baking sun! You can watch the audience on the maxi-screen, you can follow it all without suffering in the sun, as they say that today will be a very hot day. Thank you”:
After his catechesis he mentioned to the Polish pilgrims that today is the day of St. Barnabas, the apostle who along with St. Paul spread the Gospel among the pagans and, full of faith and zeal, gave his life to Christ without reserve, suffering a martyr's death. “Let us learn from him the fear of God and perseverance in faith. With courage, let us proclaim to the world the evangelical message”.
Addressing the Italian faithful, he greeted the participants in the Congress on Ethics and Finance at the Augustinianum, organised by the Pontifical Council for the Family, commenting that, “in effect, finance nowadays needs ethics”. He also addressed the pilgrims of Castel San Giovanni, the home town of Cardinal Agostino Casaroli who was secretary of State between 1979 and 1990. “He was a good man, this Casaroli”, he remarked.
He also greeted the Fiat workers from Pomigliano, in southern Italy, who donated a small blue car identical to the one he used during his visit to Assisi in October 2013. Earlier the workers had said that it filled them with pride to see the Pope using the same car they used themselves to go to work or home.
Finally, he said that during the month of June the liturgy invites us to pray to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and he urged all to do so, commenting that this devotion teaches the young to love intensely, the sick to be strong and to carry the cross of their suffering with patience, and the newly married to build their family on the foundations of the faithfulness and love of God.