Published: Tue, March 24, 2020
Markets | By Otis Pena

Pope Francis calls for world prayer to stop coronavirus

Pope Francis calls for world prayer to stop coronavirus

This exhortation of Francisco, and another from that court which he called for two days before, are related to the emergency situation caused by the spread of the new coronavirus, a pandemic to which he called for a response "with universality of prayer, compassion and tenderness".

The pope said that on Friday (March 27) evening he would deliver an extraordinary "Urbi et Orbi" blessing from an empty St. Peter's Square. "Let us think about them and pray for them", Pope Francis said. "On that day on which many Christians recall the annunciation to the Virgin Mary of the Incarnation of the Word, may the Lord listen to the united prayer of all of His disciples who are preparing themselves to celebrate the victory of the Risen Christ".

Francis, who is secluded in the Vatican and holding his general audiences over the internet instead of before crowds in St. Peter's Square, broadcast a video message over television as the praying began.

More than 311,900 people have contracted COVID-19 as of March 22, according to Johns Hopkins University. "Let's be attentive when we pray not to fall into routine, without the awareness that the Lord is here, that I'm speaking with the Lord and He is able to resolve problems".

Likewise, Mejia asked them to listen to his prayer giving the Urbi et Orbi Blessing, with the possibility of gaining plenary indulgence for all those who listen to it.

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The Vatican's Apostolic Penitentiary has granted a plenary indulgence for people who pray for an end to the pandemic, healing for the sick, and the eternal repose of the dead.

An indulgence is an ancient practice of prayer and penance for the remission of the temporal punishment a person is due for sins that have been forgiven. While the normal conditions for obtaining a plenary indulgence include sacramental Confession and Communion, during the pandemic, those conditions have been altered to when it again becomes possible. He makes us wait.

Pope Francis also expressed concern for "authorities who have to take strong measures for our good" and the police and soldiers maintaining public order and enforcing the lockdown.

At the Angelus yesterday, he spoke of Christ as the light that brightens darkness. The Gospel tells the episode of the blind man from birth, to whom Jesus gives the sight.

"Sin is like a dark veil that covers our face and prevents us from seeing ourselves and the world clearly. The Lent that we are living is an opportune and precious time to approach the Lord, asking for his mercy, in the different forms that Mother Church offers us", Francis said.

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