Pope at Angelus: 'Amid trials and 'storms', do I cling to Christ?'

During his Sunday Angelus, Pope Francis calls on faithful amid all uncertainty and fear, to draw fearlessly toward Christ who will always calm the storm.

Jun 24, 2024

By Deborah Castellano Lubov
Even amid turmoil and distress, we are to abandon ourselves to the Lord, trusting in Him always...

This was the comforting message Pope Francis offered to the faithful at his weekly Angelus address on Sunday.

Speaking to the thousands of pilgrims gathered in St. Peter's Square at midday, the Holy Father reflected on today's Gospel reading according to St. Mark, which recounts the story of when Jesus and the disciples were in a boat on Lake Tiberias, and the disciples were terrified, as Jesus slept, when a sudden and strong storm threatened, or so it seemed, the sinking of the boat.

Trusting the Lord amid turmoil
Ultimately, the Lord had the whole situation under control, and taught them a lesson about trusting Him.

Even if it may have seemed "that Jesus wanted to test them" and their faith, the Pope observed that ultimately they come out of this experience more aware of Jesus' power, and of His presence, in their midst.

Therefore, the frightening episode, the Holy Father explained, makes them stronger and more ready to face other obstacles and difficulties, including the fear of venturing out to proclaim the Gospel. Asking why the Lord did this, the Pope suggested the episode strengthened their faith and made them more courageous.

"Having overcome this trial with Him," the Pope observed, "they would know how to face many others, even to the cross and martyrdom, to bring the Gospel to all peoples."

Applies to us
Likewise, the Holy Father suggested, Jesus does the same with us.

"Especially in the Eucharist," he noted, "Christ gathers us around Himself, gives us His Word, and nourishes us with His Body and His Blood."

With this experience, the Pope said, the Lord "invites us to set sail, to transmit everything we have heard and to share what we have received with everyone, in everyday life," and to do so "even when it is difficult."

The Lord, he observed, does not spare us from hard times, but, without ever abandoning us, He helps us to face them.

Thus, he suggested, we too, overcome them with His help, learning, more and more, to cling to Him and to trust in His power, which goes far beyond our capacities."

This abandonment to Jesus, he also suggested, enables us to "overcome uncertainties and hesitations" and rather, "with courage and greatness of heart," tell everyone "that the Kingdom of Heaven is present, here, and that with Jesus at our side, we can make it grow together, beyond all barriers."

My constant help amid any storm
Given this, the Pope called on faithful to ask themselves some questions.

"In times of trial," he pondered, "can I remember the times when I have experienced, in my life, the presence and help of the Lord?"

"When a storm arrives," he continued, "do I let myself be overwhelmed by the turmoil, or do I cling to Him, to find calm and peace, in prayer, silence, listening to the Word, adoration and fraternal sharing of faith?"

Pope Francis concluded by imploring that the Virgin Mary, who accepted God's will with humility and courage, grant us, in difficult moments, the serenity of abandonment in Him.--Vatican News

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