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Pope Francis encourages Christians to ask for the saints’ intercession

Pope Francis continued his catechesis on St. Joseph, noting the Church’s significant “devotion to this great saint.”

He reflected on the importance of asking the saints for intercession, explaining that “the Christian people have always turned to the saints as friends of the Church.”

Because it is World Day for Consecrated Life, Pope Francis prayed in a special way for all consecrated men and women.


Dear Brothers and Sisters:

In our continuing catechesis on Saint Joseph, we have seen how the Church, in pondering the message of the Gospels, has grown in devotion to this great saint. Our veneration of the saints and our trust in their intercession are grounded in the very mystery of the Church as “the communion of saints”, redeemed by Christ’s saving sacrifice and united to him as members of his mystical body. Our confidence in their intercession is born of our union with them in Christ, and the bonds of spiritual solidarity that unites the pilgrim Church on earth to the saints in heaven. The Christian people have always turned to the saints as friends of Christ and, consequently, as our friends, ever ready to help and support us at decisive moments in our lives.

Among the saints, the Church especially venerates the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God and our Mother. So too, we give special honor to Saint Joseph, to whose care God entrusted the Holy Family. Echoing a prayer that I have recited daily for many years, let us all place ourselves under the protection of Saint Joseph and ask him to make known to us, in union with Jesus and Mary, the great power of his friendship and love.

I greet the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors taking part in today’s Audience, particularly those from the United States of America. Today, the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord, let us pray especially for all consecrated men and women, and the members of societies of apostolic life, on this World Day for Consecrated Life. Upon all of you, and your families, I invoke the Lord’s blessings of joy and peace. God bless you!


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