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Pope Francis reflects on his mother’s advice and the counsel of the Virgin Mary

The Holy Father speaks in his general audience about his past and reflects on the guidance of the Holy Spirit and the gift of advice from those who love us

Pope Francis spoke of the good counsel of Our Lady during his general audience this morning, relating a story from his own past in which both his mother and the Mother of Christ helped him in his priestly ministry.

“I remember once, I was in the confessional, and there was a long queue in front of the Shrine of Lujan, the diocese of that bishop there, and there was a young man in the queue, all modern with tattoos,” the Pope said. “He came to tell me what was happening in his life. He had a big, difficult problem. And [he asked me] what would you do? So I told my mother about this and my mother said to me: ‘Go to the Virgin Mary and she will tell you what you must do.’

“Here was a woman who had the gift of counsel. She did not know how to solve her son’s problems but she indicated the right way: ‘Go to Our Lady and she’ll tell you.’ This is the gift of counsel. Do not say ‘Do this.’ Let the Spirit speak. And that woman—humble, simple—gave her son the truest, most beautiful advice, because this young man said to me: ‘I looked upon Our Lady and I heard that I need to do this, this, this.’

“I did not have to say a word. It all came from my mother, the Virgin Mary and the young man. This is the gift of counsel. You mothers who have this gift, ask for this gift for your children; the gift of being able to counsel your children. It is a gift from God.”

The Holy Father reflected further on the gift of counsel, saying it is important that we can count on the advise of wise people who love us.

“Now, through the gift of counsel, it is God himself, with his Spirit who enlightens our hearts, so as to help us understand the proper way to speak and behave and the path to follow,” the Pope said.

It is through prayer and the Holy Spirit, the Pope continued, that we can preserve the gift of counsel. In his catechesis, Pope Francis explore the theme further, saying ‘today, as we give thanks for the gift of counsel, let us seek to support one another along the path of faith, as we seek to be ever more docile to the working of the Holy Spirit in our hearts.’

Pope Francis also announced that Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s Secretary of State, will travel on Thursday to the shrine of Our Lady of the Rosary in Pompeii, and concluded by blessing pilgrims from across the world who attended the audience.

– daniel@sconews.co.uk

Pic: Pope Francis makes the sign of the Cross after praying in front of a statue of Mary at the conclusion of Easter Mass in St Peter’s Square at the Vatican

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