Pope on the Assumption: Mary is the Gate of Heaven. Rosaries for Syria
At the Angelus, Pope Francis explains the words used by Mary in the Magnificat: Magnify and rejoice. "If we want our life to be happy, God must be placed first, because he alone is great". Closeness to the peoples of South Asia affected by the monsoons. The rosaries blessed by the Pope will be distributed to Syrian families.
Vatican City (AsiaNews) - On the day when the Church celebrates the Assumption of Mary into heaven, Pope Francis pointed out that from heaven, she "is waiting for us, as a mother waits for her children to return home. In fact the people of God invoke her as a "Gateway to heaven". We are on our way, pilgrims to our home above”. Immediately after the Angelus prayer with the faithful gathered in St. Peter's Square, Francis wanted to bless 6 thousand rosaries that will be distributed to Syrian families.
In his reflection before the Marian prayer, he focused on two verbs, magnify and rejoice, contained in today's Gospel (Luke 1, 39-56). We rejoice when something so beautiful happens that it is not enough to rejoice inside, in the soul, but we want to express happiness with the whole body”, said the Pope. “Mary rejoices because of God… she teaches us to rejoice in God, because He does "great things"”.
"To magnify - he explained - means to exalt a reality through its greatness, its beauty ... Mary exalts the greatness of the Lord, praises Him saying that He is really great. In life it is important to look for great things, otherwise you get lost behind so many little things. Mary shows us that if we want our life to be happy, God must be placed first, because He alone is great. How often, instead, we live pursuing things of little importance: prejudices, rancor, rivalry, envy, superfluous material goods ... How much pettiness in life! Today Mary invites us to look up at the "great things" that the Lord has accomplished in her. These are the "great things" that we celebrate today. Mary is assumed in heaven: small and humble, she receives the highest glory first ".
"The feast of the Assumption of Mary - he concluded - is a call to all, especially for those who are afflicted by doubts and sadness, and live with their eyes turned downwards. let us look up, heaven is open; it does not arouse fear, it is no longer distant, because on the threshold of heaven there is a mother who awaits us. She is the Queen of heaven, and she is our mother. She loves us, smiles and helps us with care. Like every mother she wants the best for her children and tells us: "You are precious in the eyes of God; you are not made for the little fulfillment of the world, but for the great joys of heaven. " Yes, because God is joy, not boredom. Let us allow ourselves to be taken by Our Lady's hand . Every time we take the Rosary in hand and pray it, we take a step towards the great goal of life. Let us be attracted by true beauty, let us not be sucked into the smallness of life, but choose the greatness of Heaven. May the Blessed Virgin, Gate of Heaven, help us to look every day with confidence and joy there, where our true home is. "
Immediately after the Angelus, the pope expressed his closeness to the populations of several South Asian countries (India, Bangladesh, China, Taiwan, ...), affected by the monsoon rains. "Pray - he said - for the victims and the displaced, for all the homeless families. May the Lord give strength to them and to those who help them”.
After greeting the pilgrims in Czestochowa (Poland), Francis announced that he wanted to bless "a large number of Rosaries destined for the brothers of Syria", asking those present to "accompany with prayer the gesture I am about to make".
"On the initiative of the Association "Aid to the Church in need"- he explained - about six thousand sets of the Rosary were made. Today, on this great feast of Mary, I bless them, and then they will be distributed to the Catholic communities in Syria as a sign of my closeness, especially to families who have lost someone because of the war. Prayer made with faith is powerful! let us continue to pray the Rosary for peace in the Middle East and in the whole world. "
After the prayer of the Hail Mary, the pontiff blessed the rosaries which, he said, were made by the Carmelite nuns of Bethlehem.