Pope: Amid pandemic situation, with Christ we are never alone
At the Angelus, broadcast via streaming from the Vatican library, Pope Francis comforts the sick and lonely. The value of spiritual communion with Jesus Christ, "when it is not possible to receive the sacrament". Appreciation for priests, close to the people, not "like Don abbondio". Mass celebrated by Msgr. Delpini at the Policlinico Milan. "The promise of the living water that Jesus made to the Samaritan woman became reality on his Easter: blood and water "came out of his pierced side." "We too, born to new life through Baptism, are called to witness to the life and hope that are in us".
Vatican City (AsiaNews) - "United with Christ we are never alone, rather we form One Body, of which He is the Head", even if "in this situation of pandemic", "we find ourselves living more or less in isolation," were Pope Francis’ words of comfort to those who because of the coronavirus epidemic are housebound and unable to go out.
To avoid crowds in St. Peter's Square, the Pope himself recited the Sunday Angelus from the Vatican library, which was streamed by Vatican News.
As the Eucharistic celebration with the people is not possible, the Pope himself decided to celebrate Mass and broadcast it online.
Speaking today at the end of the Marian prayer, Francis stressed the value of "spiritual communion in the Eucharist, a highly recommended practice when it is not possible to receive the sacrament. This I say for everyone, especially for people who live alone. "
He also praised the priests who in this moment of emergency are close to the people in all ways "so that the people do not feel abandoned, priests with apostolic zeal, who have understood that in times of pandemic you should not be like Don Abbondio ".
He particularly recalled Msgr. Mario Delpini, the Archbishop of Milan who celebrated a mass at the Polyclinic of Milan this morning for the patients hospitalized there. Days before, the same Msgr. Delpini pronounced a prayer to Mary under the spire of the Madonnina, on the roof of Milan cathedral. The gesture was transmitted by TV channels.
Previously, Francis commented on the gospel of today's mass, Jesus' dialogue with the Samaritan woman (3rd of Lent, A, John 4, 5-42).
He said "at the heart of this dialogue is water. On the one hand, water as an essential element, which satisfies the body's thirst and supports life. On the other, water as a symbol of divine grace, which gives eternal life ".
And after reviewing the symbol of water in the Old Testament and in St. Paul, he added: "Christ ... is the Temple from which, according to the vision of the prophets, the Holy Spirit gushes forth, which purifies and gives life. Those who thirst for salvation can draw freely from Jesus, and the Spirit will become in him or her a source of full and eternal life. The promise of the living water that Jesus made to the Samaritan woman became reality on his Easter: "blood and water" came out of his pierced side (Jn 19:34). Christ, the immolated and risen Lamb, is the source from which the Holy Spirit springs, who forgives sins and regenerates to new life ".
“This gift - he concluded - is also the source of the testimony. Like the Samaritan woman, anyone who personally encounters the living Jesus feels the need to tell it to others, so that everyone will come to confess that Jesus "is truly the savior of the world" (Jn 4:42) ... We too, born of new life through Baptism, we are called to witness the life and hope that are in us. If our search and our thirst find full fulfillment in Christ, we will show that salvation does not lie in the "things" of this world, but in the One who loved us and always loves us: Jesus our Savior, in the living water that He Offers us".