The joy of Christ’s resurrection is needed now more than ever in a time when war in Ukraine and other parts of the world makes the hope for peace seem like an illusion, Pope Francis said before giving his Easter blessing.
Before giving his Christmas blessing to the city of Rome and to the world, Pope Francis drew attention to the many places around the globe and within human hearts in need of Jesus, the prince of peace.
The Easter liturgies — with the fire, sharing of light from the paschal candle, the renewal of baptismal promises and the proclamation that Jesus has risen — assure people that it is never too late to start again, Pope Francis said.
On a Christmas like no other, Pope Francis prayed for people who could not be with their families because of the COVID-19 pandemic and urged everyone to recognize and help those who are suffering even more.
The proclamation of hope, new life and victory over death, he said, should be “a different ‘contagion,’ a message transmitted from heart to heart, for every human heart awaits this good news,” Pope Francis said.
Pope Francis offered his meditation on the meaning of the COVID-19 pandemic and its implications for humanity March 27 before raising a monstrance with the Blessed Sacrament and giving an extraordinary blessing “urbi et orbi” (to the city and the world).
Pope Francis said he will grant a plenary indulgence to the faithful who watch or listen to his extraordinary blessing “urbi et orbi” (to the city and the world) at 6 p.m. Rome time (12 p.m. Central Time) March 27.