pope's message

POPE'S MESSAGE | We are ‘channels for broadcasting’ God’s gifts

Pope Francis knelt before a priest to confess at a Lenten prayer service March 17 in St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican. The pope invited all Catholics to “rediscover the sacrament of reconciliation” this Lent by taking part in the “24 Hours for the Lord” initiative March 23-24 in many dioceses worldwide.

VATICAN CITY — Christian hope is built on patiently enduring everything life brings and knowing how to see God's presence and love everywhere, Pope Francis said.

God "never tires of loving us" as He "takes care of us, dressing our wounds with the caress of His goodness and His mercy, meaning, He consoles us and He never tires of consoling us," the pope said at his general audience in St. Peter's Square March 22.

POPE’S MESSAGE | Shady business deals that threaten employment a ‘grave sin’

Pope Francis greeted people March 12 on a visit at the Rome parish of St. Magdalene of Canossa.

VATICAN CITY — Employers who make business deals that threaten people's livelihood commit a sin that robs men, women and their families of their dignity, according to Pope Francis.

"Whoever — because of economic maneuvering and business dealings that are not all clear — closes factories and businesses and takes work away from men and women commits a grave sin," the pope said March 15 before concluding his weekly general audience.

POPE’S MESSAGE | Bible, like cellphone, should be carried always

Pope Francis attended the first day of his Lenten retreat at the Pauline Fathers’ retreat center in Ariccia, 20 miles southeast of Rome, March 5. The pope and top members of the Roman Curia were on retreat from March 5-10.

VATICAN CITY — Christians should care about reading God's messages in the Bible as much as they care about checking messages on their cellphones, Pope Francis said.

As Christ did in the desert when tempted by Satan, men and women can defend themselves from temptation with the word of God if they "read it often, meditate on it and assimilate it" into their lives, the pope said before praying the Angelus with those gathered in St. Peter's Square March 5.

POPE"S MESSAGE | Lent is time to relive Christ’s exodus from slavery to freedom

VATICAN CITY — Like the people of Israel freed from the bondage of slavery, Christians are called to experience the path toward hope and new life in the Lenten season, Pope Francis said.

Through His passion, death and resurrection, Jesus "has opened up for us a way that leads to a full, eternal and blessed life," the pope said at his weekly general audience March 1, Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent for Latin-rite Catholics.

"Lent lives within this dynamic: Christ precedes us with His exodus and we cross the desert, thanks to Him and behind Him," he said.

POPE’S MESSAGE | Greed, selfishness corrupt beauty of God’s creation

Pope Francis greeted Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York at his general audience Feb. 22 in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican. Also pictured is Archbishop Georg Ganswein, prefect of the papal household.

VATICAN CITY — Humanity's greed and selfishness turns creation into a sad and desolate world instead of the sign of God's love that it was meant to be, Pope Francis said.

Human beings are often tempted to view creation as "a possession we can exploit as we please and for which we do not have to answer to anyone," the pope said Feb. 22 at his weekly general audience.

"When carried away by selfishness, human beings end up ruining even the most beautiful things that have been entrusted to them," the pope said.

POPE’S MESSAGE | Even in dark times, never lose hope in God’s love

Pope Francis greeted participants in the Indigenous Peoples’ Forum of the International Fund for Agricultural Development Feb. 15 at the Vatican. Development projects involving indigenous communities must be planned in consultation with them and must respect their traditional relationship to the land, Pope Francis said.

VATICAN CITY — Christians must never lose hope and should remind themselves that God loves them even at their worst, Pope Francis said.

God's love provides "security" both in difficult moments and even when "I have done something terrible and evil," the pope said Feb. 15 at his weekly general audience.

"No one can take this security from us. We must repeat it like a prayer: God loves me. I am sure that God loves me!" he said.

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