04/03/2020, 11.57
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Pope calls for prayers for people seeking to solve pandemic crisis

Francis recalls the Virgin Mary’s "seven sorrows". “She didn't ask herself to be a quasi-redeemer or a co-redeemer: no. There is one Redeemer and this title not a dual title. Only disciple and mother. And so, as a mother we must think of her, we must look to her, we must pray to her. She is the Mother”.

Vatican City (AsiaNews) - Pope Francis introduced mass this morning at Casa Santa Marta with a prayer for those who help today and who are also thinking about how to help us all when the pandemic will end.

"There are people - he said - who are now starting to think about the aftermath: the aftermath of the pandemic. Of all the problems that will arise: problems of poverty, of work, of hunger ... We pray for all the people who help today, but also think about tomorrow, to help us all. " 

On this Passion Friday, which commemorates Mary's sorrows, Pope Francis dedicated his homily to Our Lady of Sorrows. Today, he said, “it will do us good to think about Our Lady's Sorrows and to thank her because she accepted to be a Mother.” Pope Francis recalled that, “Christian devotion has collected Our Lady's sorrows and speaks of the "Seven Sorrows". The first, he said, is “just 40 days after the birth of Jesus, Simeon's prophecy that speaks of a sword that will pierce her heart”. In the second sorrow, “she thinks about the flight to Egypt to save her Son's life”, while the third recalls, “those three days of anguish when the boy remained in the temple.”

The fourth and fifth sorrow, he said, see Our Lady meeting Jesus on the way to Calvary and his subsequent death on the Cross. Pope Francis noted that in the sixth and seventh sorrow, Mary continues to accompany Jesus when he is taken down from the Cross and then buried. “It is good for me”, said the Pope, “late in the evening, when I pray the Angelus, to pray these seven sorrows as a remembrance of the Mother of the Church”, who, with so much pain, gave birth to all of us.

 “Our Lady never asked anything for herself”, Pope Francis underlined.  “She only agrees to be a Mother.” She accompanied Jesus like a disciple, because the Gospel shows that she followed Jesus: with her friends, pious women, “she followed Jesus, she listened to Jesus”. The Pope issued an invitation to “Honour Our Lady and say: ‘This is my Mother’, because she is a Mother. And this is the title she received from Jesus, right there, at the moment of the Cross.” 

“Our Lady did not want to take away any title from Jesus”, said Pope Francis, “she received the gift of being His Mother and the duty to accompany us as Mother, to be our Mother. She didn't ask herself to be a quasi-redeemer or a co-redeemer: no. There is one Redeemer and this title not a dual title. Only disciple and mother. And so, as a mother we must think of her, we must look to her, we must pray to her. She is the Mother. In the Mother Church. In the motherhood of Our Lady we see the motherhood of the Church which receives everyone, good and bad: All”.

Francis concluded: “Today it would do us good to stop a little and think about the pain and sorrows of Our Lady. She is our Mother. And how she bore them, how she bore them well, with strength, with tears: they were not fake tears, it was a heart destroyed by pain. It will do us good to stop a bit and say to Our Lady: 'Thank you for accepting to be Mother when the Angel told you and thank you for accepting to be Mother when Jesus told you.' "

The Pope ended the celebration with adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and a blessing.

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