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For the dignity of women

· ​The General Audience prior to the meeting with cardiologists ·

“We are all on guard, even Christian communities, of views of femininity that are affected by prejudice and detrimental suspicions of their intangible dignity”. Pope Francis said this at the General Audience in St Peter’s Square, on Wednesday 31 August, commenting on the Gospel scene of the woman who is healed from hemorrhages.

The Pope said that Jesus’ miracle “causes one to reflect on how the woman is often perceived and represented”. Indeed, for this woman, “‘salvation’ assumes multiple connotations: firstly it restores health”; then “it frees her from social and religious discrimination; moreover, it implements the hope that she carried in her heart, eliminating her fears and her despair; finally, it allows her to return to the community, freeing her from the necessity of acting in secret”. Hence the Pope invited everyone to “ask forgiveness for our sins and move forward, with courage, as this woman did”.

After the audience with the faithful, the Pope went to the new Fiera di Roma to greet the participants of the annual conference organized by the European Society of Cardiology. There are “laws engraved within human nature that no one can tamper with”, he said in his address to those present, “but rather”, they “must be ‘discovered, respected and cooperated with’”. In fact, science alone is not enough “to understand the mystery contained within each person”. Looking precisely at man “in his totality”, allows us, the Pope said, “to have a profound understanding of the poorest, those most in need, and the marginalized”.

The Pope’s catechesis at the general audience  

The Pope’s address to cardiologists  

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St. Peter’s Square

Jan. 20, 2018

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