04/25/2021, 12.57
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Pope: Jesus wants everyone to receive the love of the Father and have life

At the Regina Caeli, Pope Francis recalls the 130 migrants who drowned in the Mediterranean in a shipwreck and the inertia of those who did not help. 10 martyrs killed in Guatemala during the military dictatorship of Rios Montt Beatified. The Church "is called to carry out this universal mission of Christ" even among those who "are not part of our community".

Vatican City (AsiaNews) - "Jesus wants everyone to be able to receive the love of the Father and have life": Pope Francis stressed this today in his commentary on today's Gospel (4th Sunday of Easter, B, John 10, 11-18), which presents the figure of the Good Shepherd.

The Pope spoke of Jesus' "universal anxiety", and of the Church which "is called to carry out this universal mission of Christ" even among those who "are not part of our community".

Earlier in the morning, Francis celebrated a Mass in St. Peter's for the ordination of 9 priests. Then speaking to the faithful in the square, before the Regina Caeli, he defined Jesus "as the true shepherd, who defends, knows and loves his sheep".

Jesus, he explained, "defends us and saves us in many difficult, dangerous situations, through the light of his word and the strength of his presence, which we experience especially in the sacraments."

He "knows his sheep and the sheep know him (v. 14) ... We are not a “mass”, a “multitude” for Him, no. We are unique individuals, each one with his or her own story, each one with his or her own value, both because they have been created and have been redeemed by Christ. Each of us can say: Jesus, you know me! It is true, it is like this: He knows us as no other. Only He knows what is in our hearts, our intentions, our most hidden feelings. ".

Finally, Jesus "loves his sheep ... Love for his sheep, that is, for each of us, leads him to die on the cross, because this is the will of the Father, that no one be lost ... Jesus wants everyone to be able to receive the love of the Father and to have life.

The Church is called to carry on this universal mission of Christ. Beyond those who participate in our communities there are many people who do so only at particular moments or never. But this does not mean they are not God’s children, whom the Father entrusts to Christ the Good Shepherd. Jesus gave his life for each and every person. And each and every one of us Christians must bear witness to his love through humble and fraternal behaviour.”

After the Marian prayer of Easter, Francis recalled the beatification of 10 martyrs (three Missionary priests of the Sacred Heart and 7 lay people) which took place in Guatemala two days ago. The sacrifice of the so-called "quiché martyrs" took place in the 1980s, during the military dictatorship of Rios Montt. Then he prayed for the victims of a volcano eruption in St Vincent and Grenadines and those of a Covid hospital in Baghdad.

After a short pause, he recalled the sinking of a dingy in the Mediterranean, which caused the death of 130 migrants. The UN, the European countries, Libya are in turn justifying their inaction and blaming each other each other for not having brought any relief.

“They are human beings - said the pontiff - they are people; for days they have been calling for help; help that didn’t arrived. Let us all ask ourselves about this umpteenth tragedy. It is the time of shame. Let us pray for these brothers and for the many who continue to die in these dramatic journeys. We also pray for those who can help but prefer to look the other way. Let us pray in silence for them”.

Finally, recalling the ordination of the new priests a few hours earlier, he asked the faithful to pray "the Lord to multiply the new workers who can work in the Lord's vineyard".

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