ADDRESS OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS
Good Friday, 3 April 2015
O Christ Crucified and Victorious, Your Via Crucis is the consummation of your life; it is the icon of your obedience to the will of the Father; it is the realization of your infinite love for us sinners; it is the proof of your mission; it is the definitive fulfilment of Revelation and salvation history. The weight of your Cross frees us of all our burdens.
In your obedience to the will of the Father, we understand our rebellion and disobedience. In you — sold, betrayed and crucified by your own people and loved ones — we see our daily betrayals and our habitual infidelities. In your innocence, the Immaculate Lamb, we see our culpability. In your face — struck, spat on and disfigured — we see all the brutality of our sins. In the cruelty of your Passion, we see the cruelty of our hearts and of our actions. In your experience of being “abandoned”, we see all those who have been abandoned by their relatives, by society, left without care and solidarity. In your body — stripped bare, pierced and lacerated — we see the bodies of our brothers and sisters left by the wayside, disfigured by our negligence and indifference. In your thirst, Lord, we see the thirst of your merciful Father who in You wanted to embrace, forgive and save all of humanity. In You, Divine Love, we see our brothers and sisters who are still being persecuted, decapitated and crucified for their faith in You, before our very eyes and often with our complicit silence.
Impress, Lord, in our hearts the sentiments of faith, hope, love and sorrow for our sins. Lead us to repent for our sins which crucified You. Lead us to transform our conversion made up of words into a conversion of life and deeds. Lead us to guard within us the living memory of your disfigured Face, so as never to forget the terrible price you paid for our freedom. Jesus Crucified, strengthen faith in us so we do not fall in the face of temptation; revive hope in us so we do not go astray toward the seductions of the world; guard charity in us so we are not fooled by corruption and worldliness. Teach us that the Cross is the way to the Resurrection. Teach us that Good Friday is the road to an Easter of light; teach us that God never forgets a single one of his children and never tires of forgiving us and of embracing us with his infinite mercy. Teach us, also, to never tire of asking for forgiveness, of believing in the boundless mercy of the Father.
Soul of Christ, sanctify us. Body of Christ, save us. Blood of Christ, inebriate us. Water from the side of Christ, wash us. Passion of Christ, comfort us. O good Jesus, hear us. Within your wounds, hide us. Never let us be separated from You. From the malignant enemy, defend us. At the hour of death, call us; and bid us come to you. That with your saints we may praise you forever and ever. Amen.
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