(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Sunday prayed the Regina coeli prayer with
the tens of thousands of faithful who had gathered in Saint Peter’s Square for a Mass
of Canonization for more than 800 saints. Before the Regina coeli, the Holy
Father prayed especially for the countries of Italy, Colombia and Mexico, which had
given so many new saints to the Church.
Pope Francis also called to mind the beatification on Saturday of the Italian priest Father Luigi Novarese, who, he said, was “able to renew the pastoral care of the sick by making them active participants in the Church.”
The Holy Father also had greetings for greeted all those who participated in Sunday’s March for Life, inviting them to continue to draw attention to the “important issue of respect for human life from the moment of conception.” He urged support for the European initiative “One of us” that strives to obtain juridical protection for human embryos. And Pope Francis noted the upcoming “Day for Evangelium vitae” as “a special moment for those who have at heart the sanctity of human life.”
Finally, Pope Francis said, “let us call upon the Virgin Mary, the mother and model of all Christians.”
Below is a Vatican Radio English translation of his remarks before the traditional Eastertide prayer of Marian devotion.
Dear brothers and sisters,
At the end of this celebration, I wish to greet all of you who have come to pay homage to the new saints, especially the official delegations of Italy, Colombia and Mexico. May the martyrs of Otranto help the beloved Italian people to look with hope to the future, trusting in the nearness of God who never abandons us, even in difficult times.
Through the intercession of Mother Laura Montoya, the Lord grant new missionary and evangelizing impulse to the Church, and, inspired by the example of harmony and reconciliation of this new saint, may the beloved children of Colombia continue to work for peace and fair development of their homeland.
Let us place in the hands of Saint Guadalupe García Zavala all the poor, the sick and those who assist them, and commend to her intercession the noble Mexican nation, that, having banished all violence and insecurity, the nation might increasingly advance along the path of solidarity and fraternal co-existence.
I am also pleased to mention that [Saturday], in Rome, the priest Luigi Novarese, founder of the Center for Volunteers of Suffering and the Silent Workers of the Cross, was beatified. I join in the thanksgiving for this exemplary priest, who was able to renew the pastoral care of the sick by making them active participants in the Church.
I greet the participants in the "March for Life" which took place in Rome this [Sunday] morning and invite you to keep the attention of everyone on the important issue of respect for human life from the moment of conception. In this regard, I am pleased to recall the signature-collection drive currently underway in many Italian parishes, in order to support the European “One of Us” initiative to ensure legal protection to the embryo, protecting every human being from the first moment of existence. A special moment especially for those who care about the defense of the sanctity of human life will be Evangelium Vitae Day, which will take place here in the Vatican, in the context of the Year of Faith, on 15 and 16 June.
I greet with affection all parish groups, families, schools, the young people present. With filial love we now turn to the Virgin Mary, Mother and model of all Christian saints. [Have a] good Sunday, and [enjoy your] lunch.