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VATICAN CITY — People need to make peace with their lives and anything they are running from, rather than lose themselves to escapism and playful distraction, Pope Francis said.
There is an “industry of distraction” in full force today, which paints the ideal world as being “a big playground where everybody has fun” and the ideal individual as one who “makes money in order to have fun, find satisfaction” in the many “vast and diverse avenues of pleasure,” he said Sept. 5 during his weekly general audience.
Such an attitude leads to “dissatisfaction with an existence anesthetized by fun, which isn’t rest, but alienation and escaping from reality,” he added. “People have never been able to rest like they can today and yet people have never felt as much emptiness as they do today.”
The pope continued his series of audience talks about the Ten Commandments, focusing on keeping the Lord’s day holy.
It seems like an easy commandment to fulfill, he said, but it isn’t because people need to recognize there is a false kind of rest marked by avoidance and distraction, and authentic rest, which is being at peace with and giving thanks for the gift of life.
After God made the heavens and the earth, He rested, making the seventh day holy. This day reflects “God’s joy for all He created. It is a day of contemplation and blessing” and giving praise — not running away, the pope said.
“It is a time for looking at reality and saying, ‘How beautiful life is!’” he said. “To the idea of rest as escaping reality, the commandment responds with rest as blessing reality.”
In fact, the Eucharist, which lies at the heart of Sunday, means “thanksgiving,” he said; it is a day to thank the Lord for His mercy, His gifts and for the gift of life.
Sunday, he added, is a day to come to terms with one’s life, to find peace — realizing life is not easy, “but it is precious.”
So many people have so many options available for having fun, but they are not at peace with their lives, he said.
“Distancing themselves from the bitter wounds of their heart, people need to make peace with the thing they are running from. It is necessary to reconcile with one’s past, with the facts one is not facing, with the difficult parts of one’s own existence,” he said, asking everyone to reflect on whether they have come to terms with their own life.
Finding peace is a choice, he said. It is not changing one’s past, but is becoming reconciled with what has happened, “to accept and give value” to one’s life.
CITY — People, especially the young, need to live with passion — the
passion to persevere and not see life as a burden, Pope Francis said.
I read news about young people committing suicide — and there are
many,” the pope said he asks himself, “What happened here?”
say at least that ‘passion’ was missing in that life; someone did not
know how to sow a passion for living,” which meant life’s difficulties
were not confronted with this passion, he said in off-the-cuff remarks
Sept. 5. The pope was meeting with a delegation of motorcyclists racing
in an early September grand prix event along Italy’s Adriatic coast.
He told members of the group to become “infected with passion. This world needs passion.”
“Live with passion and not like someone who carries life like a burden,” he said. “Passion is moving forward.”
the word “champion” usually is associated with the world of sports, the
pope noted the delegation’s use of the phrase “champion of life” in its
greeting to the pope.
A “champion of life is the one who lives with passion,” who lives life fully, he said.
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