Below is a ZENIT translation of Pope Francis’ Angelus address today at noon to the faithful in St. Peter’s Square:
Before the Angelus:
Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!
Today’s Gospel passage, taken from the tenth chapter of Luke’s Gospel (vv. 1-12.17-20), helps us to understand what is necessary to invoke God, “the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest” (v. 2). The “laborers” of which Jesus speaks are the missionaries of the Kingdom of God, that He Himself called and sent “appointed seventy[-two]* others whom He sent ahead of Him in pairs to every town and place He intended to visit (v. 1). Their task is to proclaim a message of salvation intended for all. The missionaries always preach a message of salvation to all; not only the missionaries who go away, even us, Christian missionaries who say a good word for salvation. And this is the gift that Jesus gives us the Holy Spirit. This announcement is to say: “The kingdom of God is at hand for you.” (v. 9), because Jesus has [“approached”] God to us; God became one of us; in Jesus, God reigns in our midst, His merciful love overcomes sin and human misery.
And this is the Good News that the “laborers” should bring to everyone a message of hope and consolation, peace and charity. When Jesus sends His disciples ahead of Him in the villages, He advised them, “Into whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace to this house! “. […] Cure the sick that are in it”(vv. 5.9). All this means that the Kingdom of God is built day by day and already offers on this earth its fruits of conversion, purification, love and consolation among men. It’s a beautiful thing! To build day by day this Kingdom of God that one goes ahead [by doing.] Do not destroy, build!
What is the spirit with which the disciple of Jesus will carry out this mission? First of all: the Christian must be aware of the difficult and sometimes hostile reality that awaits him; Jesus minces no words on that; in fact, Jesus says, ‘I am sending you like lambs among wolves (v. 3).’ It is so clear.
Hostility is always at the beginning of the persecution of Christians; because Jesus knows that the mission is opposed by the work of the Evil One. For this, the worker of the Gospel will strive to be free from human influences of every kind, carrying neither money bag, sack, sandals (cf. v. 4), as recommended by Jesus, to rely solely on the power of the Cross of Christ. This means giving up all personal reason to boast, of careerism or hunger for power, and means being humble instruments of salvation worked by Jesus’ own sacrifice.
That of the Christian in the world is a wonderful mission, is a mission for all, is a mission of service, without exception; it requires so much generosity and especially his eyes and heart turned on high, to invoke the Lord’s help. There is so much need for Christians who testify with joy the Gospel in everyday life. The disciples, sent by Jesus, “returned with joy” (v. 17). When we do this, your heart fills with joy. And this expression makes me think about how much the Church rejoices, rejoices when her children receive the Good News by the dedication of so many men and women who daily proclaim the Gospel: priests – those good pastors that we all know – nuns, consecrated persons, missionary men and women – and I wonder – how many of you hear the invitation – how many of you young people who now are present in the square today, hear and heed the Lord’s call to follow him? Be not afraid! Be brave and bring to others this torch of apostolic zeal that has been left by so many exemplary disciples.
We pray to the Lord, through the intercession of the Virgin Mary that she will never be lacking to the Church generous hearts, that they work to bring to all the love and tenderness of the Heavenly Father.[Original text: Italian] [Translation by Deborah Castellano Lubov]
After the Angelus:
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
I express my closeness to the families of those killed and injured in the attack that took place yesterday in Dhaka, and also of what happened in Baghdad. Let us pray together. Let us pray together for them, for the dead and ask the Lord to convert the heart of the violent, blinded by hate.
Ave Maria …
I greet all of you, the faithful of Rome and pilgrims who came from Italy and from different countries. In particular, the group led by the Bishop of Bergamo – Atalanta […]; to [the group from] Bragança-Miranda (Portugal); the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart came from Korea with some of the faithful; Ibiza’s youth who are preparing for Confirmation; and a group of Venezuelan pilgrims. I would also like to greet my fellow countrymen of La Rioja, Chilecito: you can see the flag there!
A greeting goes to some special pilgrimages, in the name of mercy: that of the faithful of Ascoli Piceno, doing a walk along the ancient Via Salaria; one of the members of the Italian Federation of Equestrian Tourism, came on horseback, some even from Krakow; and those in bicycle and motorcycle from Cardito (Naples).
Lastly, I greet the Association “Crumbs of Hope of Carla Zichetti” the Lay Camillian Family, the Kindergarten of Verdellino, and the boys of Albino and Desenzano, and those of Sassari.
In the Holy Year of Mercy, I am happy to recall that on Wednesday, we will celebrate the memory of St. Maria Goretti, the martyr girl who, before dying, forgave her murderer. This brave girl deserves the applause of the entire square!
I wish you all a good Sunday. Please do not forget to pray for me. Good lunch and goodbye![Original text: Italian] [Translation by Deborah Castellano Lubov]