“With you, nothing is lost. With you, I can always hope. You are my hope.”
During his weekly General Audience in St. Peter’s Square this morning, April 12, 2017, Pope Francis told faithful to say this confidently to Jesus in prayer, as he continued his catechesis on Christian hope and how it looks to the mystery of the Cross, during his last weekly audience before Easter.
“Unlike worldly hopes, which fail to bring lasting satisfaction, our Christian hope is grounded in God’s eternal love, revealed in the mystery of Christ’s sacrificial death and His rising to new life.”
Recalling that as Jesus spoke of His imminent Passion and Death, he used the image of the seed that must fall to the ground and die, in order to bear fruit.
Unfailing Hope Born From Cross
Speaking on Christ’s Cross as source of our hope, the Pope said: “If one of you asks: ‘How is hope born?” “From the cross. Look at the cross, look at Christ Crucified and from there hope will come to you that no longer disappears, which lasts to eternal life.”
This hope, he continued, sprouted precisely by the strength of love: because it is a love that “hopes all, endures all,” (1 Corinthians 13:7), namely love that is God’s life, and has renewed everything it has reached.
Thus at Easter, Jesus, taking our sin upon Himself, transformed it into forgiveness, our death into resurrection, our fear into trust.
“See why there, on the cross, our hope is born and is always reborn; see how with Jesus every darkness of ours can be transformed into light, every defeat into victory, every disappointment into hope – every one, yes, every.”
Surpasses, Transforms All
“Hope surpasses all, because it is born of the love of Jesus who made Himself like a grain of wheat in the earth and who died to give life and from that life full of love hope comes.
Christ’s saving death and Resurrection, the Pontiff highlighted, show that the self-giving love that is God’s very life “can transform darkness into light, sin into forgiveness, apparent defeat into eternal victory.”
Therefore, he highlighted, the Cross of Christ is thus the source of that “unfailing hope” which gives meaning and direction to our lives.
Called to Glory
“Beyond the shadow of the Cross, we glimpse the glory to which we are called.”
Pope Francis invited those present to celebrate these holy days leading to Easter, by contemplating, in the crucified Lord, “the source of our lasting hope and the inspiration for our efforts to live in imitation of his undying love.”
Love, the Pope said, is the engine that makes our hope go on, and therefore we should ask ourselves whether we love and how well do we love.
During these days, he continued, “let us allow ourselves to be enveloped by the mystery of Jesus whose dying gives us life.”
Noting Jesus is the “seed” of our hope, Francis said if we contemplate Him, “little by little, we will understand that to hope with Jesus is to learn to see already the plant in the seed, Easter in the Cross, life in death.”
“I would now like to give you a task to do at home. It will do us all good to pause before the Crucifix – all of you have one at home — and look at Him and say to Him: “With you nothing is lost. With you I can always hope. You are my hope.”
Pope Francis concluded, calling on the pilgrims to start their homework in the Square with him.
“Let us now imagine the Crucifix and all together let us say to Jesus Crucified three times: “You are my hope.” All: ‘You are my hope.”
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