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Time to reconcile oneself with life

· At the General Audience the Pope speaks about rest ·

“Today’s society thirsts for amusement and holidays”, and for us Christians, rest is the means to “make peace with life” and to “reconcile with one’s own own history”. Pope Francis highlighted this during his General Audience in Saint Peter’s Square on Wednesday, 5 September, as he continued his series of catechesis on the Decalogue.

Commenting on the Bible passage from the Book of Exodus, the Pontiff offered a very timely reflection which denounced the flourishing industry of distraction and advertising that “portrays the ideal world as one great amusement park where everyone has fun”. After all, he said, the “prevalent concept of life today does not have its centre of gravity in activity and commitment, but in escapism”. Yet, “this mentality makes one slip toward the dissatisfaction of a life anaesthetized by fun that is not rest, but alienation and the escape from reality. Man has never rested as much as today, yet man has never experienced as much emptiness as today”. Despite all the opportunities for amusement, going out, cruises and trips, many of these things “do not give you fullness of heart. Indeed: they do not give you rest”, the Pope explained.

On the contrary, rest must be a moment of contemplation, praise and not a time for escape. Thus, for us Christians, “Sunday is not the day to forget the other days but to remember them, bless them and make peace with life”. There are so many people, the Pope observed, “who have many opportunities to amuse themselves, who are not at peace with life. Sunday is the day to make peace with life, saying: life is precious; it is not easy, sometimes it is painful, but it is precious”. He then called on the faithful “to reconcile oneself with one’s own history, with facts that one does not accept, with the difficult parts of one’s own existence” because true peace “is not about changing one’s own history but about welcoming it and valuing it, just as it has unfolded”.

Before the Audience in the Paul VI Hall, the Pontiff had greeted a delegation of riders who will participate in the San Marino and Rimini Coast’s motorcycle Grand Prix.

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St. Peter’s Square

Sept. 23, 2018

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