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Greetings to pilgrims: Our Lady of Fatima invites us to prayer, penitence and conversion, 11.05.2016

Vatican City, 11 May 2016 – In his greetings in various languages the Pope welcomed, among others, the pilgrimage of mayors from the French diocese of Chartres and the diocesan pilgrimage of Corsica. He gave a special welcome, among the Arabic-speaking faithful, to those from Syria and Lebanon, and in Portuguese, the Brazilian pilgrims from Araxá, and he reminded German pilgrims that the Jubilee Year was an invitation to give a good confession so as to be touched by the Father's merciful love.

In Italian, he greeted the Asian and African priests of the Pontifical Missionary College of St. Paul the Apostle, the Antonianum Institute and the St. Gotthard Foundation, which is currently celebrating the twentieth anniversary of its institution. He greeted the sick people assisted by the Cottolengo of Trentola Ducenta and the newly-wed couples of the Focolare Movement.

"Friday is the liturgical memory of Our Lady of Fatima", he said to the Polish pilgrims in the Square. "In this apparition, Mary invites us once again to prayer, penitence and conversion. She asks us to offend God no more. She warns all humanity of the need to abandon itself to God, the wellspring of love and mercy. Following the example of St. John Paul II, a great devotee of Our Lady of Fatima, let us listen carefully to the Mother of God, and implore peace for the world."

Finally, he addressed the Slovakian faithful, especially the Prayer Groups of Mothers, and noting that next Sunday will be Pentecost, he urged all present to pray to the Almighty so that the Holy Spirit may bestow His gifts upon us, and transform us into courageous witnesses of Christ and His Gospel.