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Enter Christ's way of thinking during Holy Week, Pope urges public audience

March 27, 2013

“Holy Week challenges us to step outside ourselves so as to attend to the needs of others,” Pope Francis told the crowd in St. Peter’s Square at the first weekly public audience of his pontificate.

Striking the theme that has already become the most consistent message of his pontificate, Pope Francis urged the faithful to make their faith active, bringing material and spiritual help to those in need: “those who long for a sympathetic ear, those in need of comfort or help.” He said: “We should not simply remain in our own secure world, that of the 99 sheep who have never strayed from the fold.”

“Holy Week is not so much a time of sorrow, but rather a time to enter into Christ’s way of thinking and acting,” the Pontiff said. To illustrate that way of thinking, he recalled how Jesus rebuked St. Peter, who had expressed horror at the notion that the Lord would suffer and die. “What Jesus is saying shakes up his plans, seems unacceptable,” the Holy Father remarked. We are all like St. Peter, he said. “Often we settle for some prayers, a distracted and infrequent Sunday Mass, some act of charity, but we don't have this courage to 'go out' and bring Christ to others.”

The Pope said that his future Wednesday audiences he will return to the theme of the Year of Faith that his predecessor Pope Benedict XVI had declared. But in his March 27 audience, just before the Easter Triduum, he wanted to reflect on Holy Week, the peak of the Church’s liturgical year.


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