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The Pope asks for help and prayers for the homeless during cold spell, 08.01.2017

After praying the Angelus the Pope asked the faithful gathered in St. Peter’s Square to pray for the children he had just baptised, and for the young catechumen he baptised on Saturday. “And I would like to extend my prayer”, he added, “to all those parents who in this period are preparing for the Baptism of a child, or have just celebrated it. I invoke the Holy Spirit upon them and their children, so that this sacrament, so easy and yet at the same time so important, is lived with faith an joy”. Likewise he invited all those present to join with the Pope’s World Prayer Network to spread, via the social networks, the prayer intentions that the Pope proposes to the Church every month. “In this way”, he said, “we carry forward the apostolate of prayer and enable communion to grow”.

Italy is experiencing a period of very cold weather in these days, which has claimed several victims including those without fixed abode, and the Holy Father urged the faithful to “think about all those who live on the streets, afflicted by the cold and often also by indifference. Unfortunately, some have not survived. Let us pray for them and ask the Lord to warm our hearts so that we can help them”.

Finally, he greeted the faithful of Rome and pilgrims from various countries, especially a group of young people from the Italian city of Cagliari, encouraging them to continue the path they undertook with the Sacrament of Confirmation. “And I thank them because they offer me the opportunity to underline that Confirmation is not simply a destination – as some say, the farewell sacrament, no, no! – it is above all a point of departure in Christian life. Let us go ahead, with the joy of the Gospel!” Francis concluded, wishing those present a good Sunday and asking them to pray for him.