Vatican – Pope: May the Jubilee be a time to rediscover, proclaim, build hope

10 May 2024
Photo ©: Vatican News

(ANS – Vatican City) – Pope Francis calls Christians to be builders of hope as he celebrates Vespers after presiding at the ceremony to officially proclaim the Jubilee of 2025.

“Christian hope gives us the courage to build a fraternal and peaceful world when it seems barely worth the effort,” Pope Francis said as he encouraged the faithful to rejoice in the gift of the resurrection and “see the promise of good at times when evil seems to prevail.”

The reality of Christian hope was at the heart of the Pope’s homily as he celebrated Second Vespers on the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord in St. Peter’s Basilica following a ceremony in which he proclaimed the ordinary Jubilee of 2025 with the public reading and delivery of the Bull of Indiction.

The theme chosen for the Jubilee year that kicks off on 24 December 2024 with the Opening of the Holy Door of St. Peter’s Basilica is “Pilgrims of Hope”.

“Brothers and sisters,” the Pope said, “Jesus destroyed our death, that we might receive life, forever,” and explained that “it is this hope, based on Christ who died and rose again, that we wish to celebrate, ponder and proclaim to the whole world in the coming Jubilee.”

This hope, he explained, “has nothing to do with mere human optimism or the ephemeral expectation of some earthly benefit.” It is “a gift daily bestowed upon us until the time when we will be one in the embrace of His love.”

Reflecting on the concept and reality of Christian hope that is “unperishable” and “unfading”, the Pope said it sustains us in the journey of our lives, even during the darkest and most difficult moments and times.

It opens our eyes to future possibilities, he continued and makes us see the promise of good at times when evil seems to prevail. 

“[Christian hope] makes us dream of a new humanity and gives us courage in our efforts to build a fraternal and peaceful world, even when it seems barely worth the effort.”

Pope Francis went on to encourage Christians, as they prepare for the celebration of the Jubilee, to lift up their hearts to Christ, and become “singers of hope in a world marked by too much despair.”

Hope, he remarked, is needed by the society in which we live, “often caught up only in the present and incapable of looking to the future;” it is needed by our age, “caught up in an individualism that is frequently and content merely to scrape along from day to day.”

Hope – he continued – “is needed by God’s creation, gravely damaged and disfigured by human selfishness,” and it is needed by peoples and nations who look to the future with anxiety and fear.

“As injustice and arrogance persist, the poor are discarded, wars sow seeds of death, the least of our brothers and sisters remain at the bottom of the pile, and the dream of a fraternal world seems an illusion.” Hope, he said, brings courage, comfort, closeness and care.

Hope, the Pope said, is needed by our young people, by the elderly, by the sick and by those who suffer in body and spirit.

“Hope is needed by the Church,” the Pope added, so she never forgets, that “as the Bride of Christ, she is loved with an eternal and faithful love, called to hold high the light of the Gospel, and sent forth to bring to all the fire that Jesus definitively brought to the world.”

“Each of us, brothers and sisters, has need of hope in our lives.”

In times of darkness, the Pope remarked, even when we feel overwhelmed by despair and unknowingly yearn for the presence of God, we are reminded of the words of theologian Fr. Romano Guardini who wrote that once darkness has lifted and people ask God: “Lord, where were you? they will once more hear his answer: ‘Closer to you than ever before!”

“Brothers and sisters,” he concluded, “May the Lord, risen from the dead and ascended into heaven, grant us the grace to rediscover hope, to proclaim hope and to build hope.

“May the Lord grant us the grace to rediscover hope, to proclaim hope and to build hope.”

By Linda Bordoni

Source: Vatican News


ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

This site also uses third-party cookies to improve user experience and for statistical purposes. By scrolling through this page or by clicking on any of its elements, you consent to the use of cookies. To learn more or to opt out, click "Further Information".