Lent is a time for deeper dialogue with God through prayer, for renewed gratitude for God’s mercy and for increased compassion for people whose lives are under attack, Pope Francis said. Source: CNS.
By Carol Glatz, CNS
In his annual message for Lent, which begins for Latin-rite Catholics tomorrow, Pope Francis said people must not only show generosity through charitable giving, but they should also work for a real structural change to today’s “economic life”.
The text of the Pope’s message was released by the Vatican yesterday.
Contemplating the great mystery of the death and resurrection of Jesus and putting it at the centre of one’s life “means feeling compassion toward the wounds of the crucified Christ present in the many innocent victims of wars, in attacks on life from that of the unborn to that of the elderly, and various forms of violence”, the Pope said in his message.
These wounds are “likewise present in environmental disasters, the unequal distribution of the earth’s goods, human trafficking in all its forms and the unbridled thirst for profit, which is a form of idolatry”.
Not only are Christians called to generously share the richness of the Gospel and gifts from God, “today, too, there is a need to appeal to men and women of good will to share, by almsgiving, their goods with those most in need, as a means of personally participating in the building of a better world,” he said.
“Charitable giving makes us more human, whereas hoarding risks making us less human, imprisoned by our own selfishness,” he said.
“We can and must go even further, and consider the structural aspects of our economic life,” he said.
That is why, the Pope said, he called for a meeting during Lent with “young economists, entrepreneurs and change-makers with the aim of shaping a more just and inclusive economy.” The meeting is set to take place in Assisi on March 26-28.
Pope Francis' 2020 Lenten message (Vatican website)