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     Home > Audiences and Angelus >  2013-12-24 20:25:50
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Pope appeals for homelss families

December 23, 2013 - Pope Francis on Sunday appealed for homeless families, calling on authorities to ensure they have a home. The appeal came after he prayed his weekly midday ‘Angelus’ and blessed a vast crowd in St. Peter’s Square. Noticing a banner that read, “The Poor Cannot Wait!” Pope Francis spoke of the great difficulties that families face without a fixed dwelling – a fate he compared to that of the Holy Family. “This makes me think that Jesus was born in a cowshed, not in a house,” the Pope said, adding later they had to flee to Egypt for their life. At the end the family returned to its home in Nazareth. The Pope said the banner made him think about many families without a home, both that never had one and those that lost it for various reasons. “Family and home go together,” the Pope stressed, adding it is very difficult for a family to carry on without a home. “In these days of Christmas, I invite all – persons, social groups and authorities - to do everything possible to ensure every family has a house,” the Pope urged. Addressing a group of protesters pressing for their demands, the Pope appealed for `'a constructive contribution, rejecting the temptation for conflict and violence and following always the path of dialogue.'' Protests aimed at impressing upon Italian leaders the pain inflicted on ordinary people by the country's economic crisis have been under way across the country for two weeks. Some of them have erupted into violence.
Before the ‘Angelus’ prayer, Pope Francis reflected on the Gospel of the fourth Sunday of Advent, where St. Mathew narrates the dilemma of Joseph after he discovered the strange pregnancy of Mary. His decision to put her aside was indeed a great sacrifice for Joseph, which the Pope compared to the sacrifice of Isaac by Abraham. The greatness of the heart of Joseph is shown in the fact that he allowed God’s ‘greater mission’ to override his own ‘good plan of life’. “Joseph was a man who always listened to the voice of God, was deeply sensitive to his secret will - a man attentive to the messages that came from the depth of his heart and from above,” the Pope said. By not allowing rancour to poison his soul, the Pope said, Joseph became even more free and great. By accepting the Lord’s plan, he found himself fully beyond the self. The Pope offered all the example of the faithful and upright Joseph who preferred to trust in the Lord rather than listening to the voices of doubt and human pride.


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