Catholic World News

Prayer unlocks the heart of God, Pope tells Padre Pio prayer groups

February 08, 2016

Thousands of members of Padre Pio prayer groups, in Rome for the veneration of the relics of St. Pio of Pietrelcina and St. Leopold Mandic, gathered in St. Peter’s Square on February 6.

Addressing the members of the prayer groups, Pope Francis paid tribute to St. Pio and emphasized the importance of the spiritual and corporal works of mercy. In his long hours in the confessional and in his intense suffering, St. Pio was a “servant of mercy” who became a “channel of mercy,” Pope Francis said.

Prayer, he continued, does not exist “to get a little peace of heart”; rather, it is a spiritual work of mercy in which we entrust others to the Lord. Quoting St. Pio, the Pope said that prayer is “the best weapon that we have, a key that opens the heart of God.”

Recalling St. Pio’s House for the Relief of the Suffering, Pope Francis also spoke about the importance of the corporal work of mercy of visiting the sick, distinguishing the treatment of the disease from the care rendered to the sick person. Again quoting St. Pio, the Pope said that “the sick person is Jesus.”

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