Pope's prayer for 'beloved and tormented Syria'
Francis uses general audience to speak once again about the war-torn nation. In his continuing catechesis dedicated by the Beatitudes, "Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted". "Understanding sin is a gift from God, it is a work of the Holy Spirit. “We alone cannot understand sin. It is a grace that we must ask for.
Vatican City (AsiaNews) - Another papal appeal for prayers for "the beloved and tormented Syria". At the end of today's general audience, in fact, Francis asked those present to pray for the Middle Eastern country. "I would like us all to pray togetehr right now for beloved and tormented Syria. Many families, many elderly, children, must flee the war. Syria has been bleeding for years. Let us pray for Syria ”.
The words spoken today add to the appeal launched Sunday at the Angelus, when he asked "the international community and all the actors involved" to make use of "diplomatic tools, dialogue and negotiations, in compliance with international humanitarian law, to safeguard the life and fate of civilians ".
Previously, continuing in the catecheses dedicated by the Beatitudes, Francis spoke of the second, "Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted."
The Pope recalled that mourning can have two aspects in the Scriptures, for "someone's death or suffering" and for "one's" sin, "when the heart bleeds from the pain of having offended God and neighbor ". It is therefore a matter of mourning for someone who "is dear to us" because "we lose him or he is ill" or "because we made him suffer". "It is therefore a matter of loving the other in such a way as to bind us to him or her until we share his pain. There are people who remain distant, one step back; instead it is important that others make a mark on our heart ".
"It is therefore a matter of loving the other in such a way as to bind them to us until we share tehir pain. There are people who remain distant, one step back; instead it is important that others make a mark on our heart. I have often spoken of the gift of tears, and how precious it is. " “There are - he said again - the afflicted to be consoled, but sometimes there are also consciences to be afflicted, to be awakened, who have a heart of stone and have forgotten how to cry. Mourning is a bitter path, but it can be useful to open your eyes to the life and sacred and irreplaceable value of each person, and at that moment you realize how short the time is ".
“There is a second meaning to this paradoxical bliss: to cry for sin. Here we must distinguish: there are those who get angry because they made a mistake. But this is pride. Instead, there are those who cry for the wrong done, for the omitted good and for the betrayal of the relationship with God. This is the cry for not having loved, which springs from having the life of others at heart. Here we cry because we do not correspond to the Lord who loves us so much, and we are saddened by the thought of the good not done; this is the sense of sin ”. "Let's think of St. Peter's crying, which will lead him to a new and much truer love, unlike Judas, who did not accept having made a mistake and committed suicide".
"Understanding sin - Francis underlined - is a gift from God, it is a work of the Holy Spirit. “We alone cannot understand sin. It is a grace that we must ask for. Lord, that I understand the evil I have done or can do. This is a very great gift and after understanding this, the cry of repentance comes."
“Ephrem the Syrian says that a face washed with tears is unspeakably beautiful (see Ascetic Discourse). “As always, Christian life has its best expression in mercy. Wise and blessed is he who accepts the pain linked to love, because he will receive the consolation of the Holy Spirit who is the tenderness of God who forgives and corrects. God always forgives, do not forget; let's not forget this. God always forgives, even the ugliest sins. Always. The problem lies with us, who tire of asking for forgiveness. That is the question. When one closes and does not ask for forgiveness. And He is there to forgive."
Finally, in greeting to the Poles, Francis recalled the World Day of the Sick celebrated yesterday. "There are many suffering people in our society, in the world and in our families from disease. May the Lord give them strength, patience and healing grace. And we always remember them and accompany them with prayer, with closeness and with the concrete gestures of compassionate and tender love."