By Devin Watkins
“In this situation of pandemic, in which we find ourselves living more or less isolated, we are invited to rediscover and deepen the value of the communion that unites all the members of the Church.”
Pope Francis offered that invitation in his remarks after the Angelus prayer on Sunday.
Union in Christ
This week has seen a raft of border closures, flight bans, and declarations of national emergencies as the Covid-19 coronavirus continues to spread around the world.
The Pope recalled that “United to Christ we are never alone, but we form one single Body, of which He is the Head.”
Pope Francis called it “a union that is nourished with prayer, and also with the spiritual communion in the Eucharist, a practice that is highly recommended when it is not possible to receive the Sacrament.”
The Holy Father said he was speaking to everyone, especially those who live alone.
Pope Francis then renewed his closeness to the sick and all the medical personnel caring for them.
He also mentioned the many volunteers who are helping the elderly, the poor, and the homeless.
“Thank you for all the efforts each of you are making to help in this extremely difficult moment,” said the Pope. “May the Lord bless you, Our Lady watch over you, and please don’t forget to pray for me.”
Gratitude to priests
Ahead of the Angelus prayer, Pope Francis spoke off-the-cuff and thanked priests around the world for their “creativity” in dealing with the measures put in place to contain the coronavirus.
Churches throughout Italy remain open to the public for private prayer, but Masses can only be held without a congregation.