The purpose of crying out to the Lord in prayer is not to get used to suffering, but to remember that God, and not humankind, is the only source of salvation and consolation, Pope Francis said.
The Book of Psalms, with its many prayers of supplication, teaches Christians how to ask “God to intervene where all human efforts are in vain. That is why prayer, in and of itself, is the way of salvation and the beginning of salvation,” the Pope said today during his weekly general audience at the Paul VI audience hall.
“The prayer of the psalms is the testimony of this cry: a multiple cry because in life, pain takes a thousand forms and takes the name of sickness, hatred, war, persecution, distrust; until the supreme ‘scandal,’ that of death,” he said.
Prior to the Pope’s arrival, participants were told that he would not be greeting them from up close and that they were to maintain proper distance from each other.
With a steady increase in Covid-19 infections prompting fears of a second wave of the pandemic, the Italian government issued a series of new decrees. Religious and civil ceremonies were limited to no more than 30 guests.
Before concluding the audience, the Pope apologised to those present and explained that with the new safety regulations in place, “it is better if we keep distant.”
“You are sitting prudently distant as it should be,” the Pope said. “But it often happens that when I go down, everyone gets close and piles up. And it’s a problem because there is a risk of infection.”
“I’m sorry that I greet you from afar, but I think that if we, as good citizens, fulfil the regulations from the authorities, this will be a help to end this pandemic,” he said.