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Church of Santo Spirito in Sassia
Sunday, 19 April 2020



Dear Brothers and Sisters,

On this Second Sunday of Easter, it was meaningful to celebrate the Eucharist, here, in the Church of Santo Spirito in Sassia, which Saint John Paul II chose as the Shrine of Divine Mercy. The Christian response to the storms of life and history cannot but be mercy: compassionate love among us and toward everyone, especially those who suffer, those who have greater difficulties and those who are more abandoned… Not pietism, nor welfarism, but compassion that comes from the heart. Divine Mercy comes from the Heart of Christ, of the Risen Christ. It flows from the ever-open wound of his side, open for us, who are always in need of pardon and comfort. May Christian mercy also inspire fair sharing among nations and their institutions, in order to face the current crisis in the spirit of solidarity.

I extend my greetings to our brothers and sisters of the Eastern Churches, who are celebrating the Feast of Easter today. Let us proclaim together: “The Lord is truly risen!” (Lk 24:34). Above all, during this time of trial, let us feel what a great gift is the hope that comes from being risen with Christ! In particular, I rejoice with the Eastern Catholic communities who, due to ecumenical reasons, celebrate Easter with the Orthodox. May this fraternity be of comfort in those places where Christians are a small minority.

Let us turn now to the Virgin Mary, Mother of Mercy, with Paschal joy.

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