Source: Vatican News
During the Angelus with pilgrims in St Peter's Square on Sunday, Pope Francis reflected on the day's Gospel, which he said calls us to persevere in our daily prayer, good works, serving others, and keeping our focus on what really matters in life.
He said that in the Gospel, those around the Lord spoke of the magnificence of the grandiose building, but the Lord reminded them of the transitory nature of things on earth that are here today and gone tomorrow, saying: "there will not be left a stone upon another stone that will not be thrown down," adding how in history wars and natural disasters will occur, sweeping away everything.
The Pope observed that these sobering words offer us a valuable teaching that there is a way out from the precariousness and volatility of human life. We can find it in the Lord's words, when He says: "By your perseverance you will secure your lives." The key word is "perseverance", he said, which means being disciplined and persistent in what the Lord has at heart and matters most.
"Jesus says to concentrate on what remains, to avoid devoting our life to building something that will then be destroyed, like that temple, and forgetting to build that which will not collapse, to build on his word, on love, on goodness."
The Pope said we can often lose focus on what is most important when we, like those at the temple, prioritize and celebrate only the world of our hands, our successes, traditions, and religious and cultural symbols. While they are important, they are passing away, he pointed out.
Striving for perseverance, he said, means: "building goodness every day...to remain constant in goodness, especially when the reality around us urges us to do otherwise."
In practical terms, this means praying even when we believe we are too busy, playing by the rules even if everyone else may not be, offering our time to our community, the poor, our parish.
In conclusion, Pope Francis said it would be good if we asked ourselves about how well we are trying to persevere in remaining in the Lord's goodness: do we strive to live by faith, justice and charity in our daily lives, do we make sacrifices to dedicate time to prayer or helping others, are we able to keep our hearts steadfast in the Lord even when circumstances around us make it difficult?
"If we persevere - Jesus reminds us - we have nothing to fear, even in the sad and ugly events of life, not even in the evil we see around us, because we remain grounded in the good...May Our Lady, servant of the Lord, persevering in prayer fortify our perseverance."
After the Angelus Pope Francis again called for prayers for Ukraine. He said: "Let us always remain close to our brothers and sisters in martyred Ukraine: close in prayer and in concrete solidarity. Peace is possible! Let us not resign ourselves to war."
The Pope also mentioned the 2022 UN Climate Change Conference underway in Egypt, saying: "I wish to recall the COP27 summit on the climate taking place in Egypt. I hope that steps forward are taken with courage and determination, in the footsteps of the Paris Accords."
Read the official text of the Pope's address here: www.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/angelus/2022/documents/20221113-angelus.html
Watch extracts from the Angelus on Vatican Youtube channel: www.youtube.com/watch?v=-HlB3IoumQs