On Saturday, Pope Francis held the fourth of his “Jubilee audiences” — a general audience that during this Year of Mercy will be held one Saturday a month.
Here is the English-language summary of his address:
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Speaker: Dear Brothers and Sisters: In our continuing catechesis for this Holy Year of Mercy, we now consider the practice of almsgiving. Our English word “alms” comes from an ancient Greek word itself meaning “mercy”. Giving “alms” is more than simply giving money; it is a matter of heart-felt concern for those in genuine need. The Bible speaks of almsgiving as a God-given duty, which must be carried out freely and joyfully, but also with a sense of responsibility. We need to distinguish the truly poor from the various forms of begging which do not help them. Jesus himself encourages a quiet and sincere concern for others who need our help, but warns against acts of charity performed to gain the approval of others. In our efforts to be merciful, let us take to heart his words: “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35).
I greet the English-speaking visitors taking part in today’s Audience, particularly the pilgrims from the Archdiocese of Dublin. In the joy of the Risen Lord, I invoke upon you and your families the loving mercy of God our Father. May the Lord bless you all![Original text: English]