Spend time with Jesus every evening to reflect on the day, pope says

Pilgrims holding drawings of a heart and a sign for the Sacred Heart Institute of Cadoneghe, Italy, joined Pope Francis for the recitation of the “Regina Coeli” prayer April 23, 2023, in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican. (CNS Photo by Vatican Media)

By Carol Glatz

Jesus knows how to turn every difficulty or fall into a step forward, Pope Francis said.

With Christ’s love “even that which seems wearisome and unsuccessful can appear under another light,” he said April 23.

Before reciting the midday “Regina Coeli” prayer with about 30,000 people gathered in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis spoke about the day’s Gospel reading, Luke 24:13-35, which describes the Risen Jesus’ encounter with the disciples heading to Emmaus.

Jesus appears beside the two disciples and prompts them to tell him what has happened and made them sad. And, while they are walking, Jesus “helps them reinterpret the facts in a different way, in the light of the prophecies, of the Word of God,” the pope said.

“Today’s Gospel invites us to tell Jesus everything, sincerely, without being afraid of disturbing him — he listens -— without fear of saying the wrong thing, without shame at our struggle to understand,” he said.

“The Lord is happy whenever we open ourselves to him,” he said. “Only in this way can he take us by the hand, accompany us and make our hearts burn again.”

The pope said a good way to do this is to dedicate some time every evening to a brief examination of conscience and to reread the day with Jesus, by “opening your heart to him, bringing to him people, choices, fears, falls and hopes — all the things that happened — to learn gradually to look at things with different eyes, with his eyes and not just our own.”

“We can thus relive the experience of those two disciples,” he said. “A difficult cross to embrace, the decision to forgive an offense, a missed opportunity for redress, the toil of work, the sincerity that comes at a price and the trials of family life can appear to us in a new light, the light of the crucified and Risen One, who knows how to turn every fall into a step forward.”

Catholic News Service
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