The Pope during his homily at Las Palmas Airbase in Lima drew inspiration from the readings of the day in which the Lord speaks to Jonah saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and proclaim to it the message that I tell you” and in which Jesus sets out towards Galilee to preach the Good News.
Suffering and indifference
The Holy Father noted how at times our cities, “with their daily situations of pain and injustice, can leave us tempted to flee, to hide, to run away.” There are those said Pope Francis, “who are found along our roadsides, living on the fringes of our cities, and lacking the conditions needed for a dignified existence. It is painful to realize that among these “urban remnants” all too often we see the faces of children and adolescents.”
Sowing the seeds of hope
Recalling Sunday’s Gospel reading, the Pope described how after the arrest of John, Jesus set out to Galilee to proclaim the Gospel of God. Unlike Jonah, he said, “Jesus reacted to the distressing and unjust news of John’s arrest by entering the city; he entered Galilee and from its small towns he began to sow the seeds of a great hope.”
Jesus, commented the Holy Father, “invited his disciples to experience in the present a taste of eternity: the love of God and neighbour. Jesus walks through the city with his disciples and begins to see, to hear, to notice those who have given up in the face of indifference, laid low by the grave sin of corruption. He begins to bring to light many situations that had killed the hope of his people and to awaken a new hope.”
Walk with Jesus in your city
The Pope stressed how “Jesus continues to walk and to awaken hope, a hope that frees us from empty associations and impersonal analyses. The kingdom of heaven is among you, he tells us. It is there wherever we strive to show a little tenderness and compassion...." God, concluded Pope Francis will never tire of setting out to meet his children. Today the Lord calls each of you to walk with him in the city, in your city. "