At the end of the celebration of Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord, before the Apostolic Blessing, the Holy Father Francis led the recitation of the Angelus prayer.
The following are the Pope’s words of introduction to the Marian prayer:
Homily of the Holy Father
Dear brothers and sisters,
Before concluding this liturgy, I would like to greet all those taking part through the means of social communication. In particular, my thought goes out to the young people all over the world, who are living today’s World Youth Day in an unprecedented way at the diocesan level. Today, the handing over of the Cross from the young people of Panama to those of Lisbon was to have taken place. This very significative gesture has been postponed to Christ the King Sunday, this coming 22 November. While waiting for that moment, I urge you young people to cultivate and witness to the hope, to the generosity, the solidarity of which we are all in need in this difficult moment.
Tomorrow, 6 April, is the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace declared by the United Nations. In this period, many sporting events have been suspended, the best fruits of sports are coming out: resistance, team spirit, fraternity, giving the best of oneself… So, let’s launch sports for peace and development once again.
Dear friends, let us journey in faith toward Holy Week in which Jesus suffers, dies and rises. Those people and families who cannot participate in the liturgical celebrations are invited to gather together in prayer at home, aided by the means of technology. Let us hold close spiritually those who are sick and their families, and all those who so self-sacrificingly care for them. Let us pray for the deceased in the light of paschal faith. Everyone is present in our hearts, in our thoughts, in our prayers.
From Mary, may we learn that interior silence, that seeing with the eyes of the heart, that loving faith so as to follow Jesus on the way of the cross that leads to the glory of the Resurrection. May she walk with us and sustain our hope.