Vatican City, 9 December 2014 (VIS) – The Holy Father appeared at the window of his study in the Vatican Apostolic Palace at midday today to pray the Angelus with the faithful gathered in St. Peter's Square. Before the Marian prayer, Francis spoke about the second Sunday of Advent as a “wonderful time that reawakens in us the expectation of Christ's return and the memory of his historic coming. It is the Lord's invitation as expressed by the prophet Isaiah: 'Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God'”.
“The prophet invites those who listen to him – including us, today – to spread among the people this message of hope: that the Lord consoles us. And to allow room for the Lord's consolation”, he continued. “But we cannot be messengers of God's consolation if we do not first experience the joy of being consoled and loved by Him. This happens especially when we listen to the Word, the Gospel, which we should carry with us in our pockets … and when we remain in silent prayer in His presence, when we encounter Him in the Eucharist or in the sacrament of Reconciliation”.
The Pope recalled those who are “oppressed by suffering, injustice and abuse; those who are slaves to money, to power, to success and worldliness. “Theirs are false consolations, they are not the true consolation of the Lord! We are all called to console our brethren, showing that only God can eliminate the causes of existential and spiritual crisis”. The Pontiff went on to encourage all those present to allow themselves to be consoled by the Lord, and he concluded by entrusting to Mary the hopes for salvation and peace for all men and women of our time.