(Vatican Radio) This was Pope Francis’ second “Jubilee Audience” in St. Peter’s Square and he used his catechesis to focus on the Year of Mercy, especially in this season of Lent.
Speaking to the thousands of pilgrims and visitors gathered on Saturday, the Holy Father said in these weeks before Easter the Church was inviting the faithful to deepen their commitment “to express God’s mercy in every aspect of their daily lives.”
Listen to Lydia O'Kane's report
He said that “such faithful Christian witness is our way of responding to God’s prior commitment to us, as expressed not only in his gift of creation, but above all in the sending of his Son.
He went on to say that in Jesus, God committed himself to offering hope and redemption to the poor, the sick, sinners and all those in need. God, the Holy Father continued, is committed to us, his first task was to create the world, and despite our attempts to ruin it, he is committed to keeping it alive.”
Jesus, the Pope underlined “is the living expression of God’s mercy and as Christians he added, we are called to bear witness to the Gospel message of hope and solidarity.
Following his catechesis the Holy Father greeted the Italian Federation of Blood Donors (FIDAS) who are holding their Jubilee Pilgrimage.
FIDAS is using the occasion to celebrate the success of their efforts since their participation in the 2000 Jubilee with St. John Paul II.
The Federation is hoping that people will consider giving blood voluntarily during the Jubilee Year.
Concluding his Audience, Pope Francis greeted all the English-speaking pilgrims present and expressed the hope that the Jubilee of Mercy would be a moment of grace and spiritual renewal for them and for their families.