Prayer Vigil: Words of Pope Francis

October 03, 2023

“Together”. Like the early Christian community on the Day of Pentecost. Like one flock, loved and gathered by one Shepherd, Jesus. Like the great crowd in the Book of Revelation we are here, brothers and sisters “from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages” (Rev 7:9), from different communities and countries, daughters and sons of the same Father, inspired by the Spirit received in baptism, and called to the same hope (cf. Eph 4:4-5).

Thank you for your presence. Thank you to the Taizé Community for this initiative. With great affection, I greet the Heads of Churches, the leaders and delegations of the different Christian traditions and all of you, especially the young people: thank you for coming to pray for us and with us, in Rome, prior to the Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, and on the eve of the spiritual retreat that precedes it. “Syn-odos”: let us walk together, not only Catholics, but all Christians, all of the baptized, the whole People of God, because “only the whole can be the unity of all” (cf. J.A. MÖHLER, Symbolism).

Like the great crowd in the Book of Revelation, we prayed in silence, listening to a “great silence” (cf. Rev 8:1). Indeed, silence is important and powerful: it can express unspeakable sorrow in the face of misfortune, but also, in moments of joy, a gladness that goes beyond words. That is why I would like to reflect briefly with you on its importance in the life of the believer, in the life of the Church and in the journey of Christian unity. The importance of silence.


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