During the Regina Caeli, Pope Francis said that we must love "with facts, not words". Love must become "the constant element of our existence", with the elderly, the sick "even if they are in the last stage", and the unborn. "Life must always be protected and loved from conception to its natural end. This is love." The pontiff mentioned the beatification of Chiara Fey in Aachen and asked for prayers for the Central African Republic. He also greeted the members of the Neocatechumenal Way.
Vatican City (AsiaNews) – In commenting today's Gospel (Jn, 15:9-17), in particular "Jesus’s instruction to ‘Remain in my love’", Pope Francis stressed that "to live in the current of God’s love, to dwell in it in a permanent way, is the condition that ensures that our love does not lose its ardour and boldness.” The pontiff added that "We must gratefully accept the love that comes from the Father and remain in this love, trying not to separate ourselves from it with selfishness and sin."
"Love is achieved in everyday life, in attitudes, in actions; otherwise it is just something illusory. Jesus asks us to uphold his commandments, which can be summarised as 'love one another as I love you” (Jn, 15:12).
"How can we ensure that the love the Risen Lord gives us is shared by others? Jesus repeatedly showed with facts, not words, who are the others we have to love. They are the ones I meet on my journey and who, with their faces and stories, question me; they are the ones who, with their very presence, push me to go beyond my interests and certainties; they are the ones who wait for my willingness to listen and travel together for a while. Availability towards every brother and sister, whoever they are and in whatever situation they may be, starting from those close to me in the family, community, work, school . . . This way, if I remain united with Jesus, his love can reach others and draw them to himself, to his friendship."
"This love for others" must become "the constant element of our existence"; for this reason, "we are called to lovingly protect the elderly as a precious treasure, even if they cause money problems and stress. This is why we must give all possible assistance to the sick, even if they are in the last stage [of their lives]; this is why unborn children are always welcomed; this is why, ultimately, life must always be protected and loved from conception to its natural end. This is love."
"The Eucharist, to which we are called to partake every Sunday, has the purpose of forming the Heart of Christ in us, so that our whole life is guided by his generous attitudes. May the Virgin Mary help us remain in the love of Jesus and grow in love for everyone, especially the weakest, so as to fully match our Christian vocation."
After the recitation of the Regina Caeli, Francis spoke to the tens of thousands of pilgrims present in St Peter’s Square about yesterday’s beatification in Aachen (Germany) of Chiara Fey, foundress of the Sisters of the Child Jesus. The Holy Father also called on everyone to pray for the Central African Republic, "A country that I had the joy of visiting and that I carry in my heart".
In the capital of that country, on 29 November 2015 in Bangui, Francis opened the first Holy Door of the Jubilee of Mercy. Recently, several violent incidents have taken place in the city, including an attack against a church that left 16 people dead and dozens wounded.
"May the Lord,” said the pontiff, “through the intercession of the Virgin Mary, help everyone say no to violence and revenge, so that peace may be built together."
The pope also greeted groups that belong to the Neocatechumenal Way, currently in Rome to mark the 50th anniversary of their foundation.