In his prayer intention for the month of December, Pope Francis prays that “volunteer non-profit and human development organizations may find people willing to commit themselves to the common good and ceaselessly seek out new paths of international cooperation”. The video begins with images of people forced to abandon their homes, due to natural disasters linked to climate change, war and economic crises. Commitment, the Pope says is “a word that many today would like to erase”, and yet “the world needs volunteers who commit to the common good”.
As images turn to people offering assistance in refugee camps, the Pope explains that “being a volunteer who helps others is a choice that makes us free; it opens us to other people’s needs — to the demands of justice, to the defense of the poor, to the care of creation”. This, he continues, “means being artisans of mercy: with our hands, with our eyes, with an attentive ear, with our closeness”.
The Holy Father pointed out that volunteering is “not just for the people but with the people”. Indeed, he noted, “the work of volunteer not-for-profit organizations is much more effective when they collaborate with each other and with governments”. In this way, he concluded, they “make the miracle of the multiplication of hope a reality”.
Speaking about this month’s prayer intention, Fr Frédéric Fornos, sj , Director of the Worldwide Prayer Network, pointed out the Pope’s insistence on the value of volunteer work in society and recalled the Holy Father’s words to members of the Cornelia De Lange Association whom he received in audience in May: “In volunteering, the fundamental dimension of the Christian image of God and man is involved”.
Available online at www.thepopevideo.org and translated into 23 languages, the video for the prayer intention for December was created and produced by the Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network, in cooperation with La Machi Agency and the Dicastery for Communication.