BY Daniel Harkins | March 11 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print

Pope accepts kiss from elderly woman during general audience in St. Peter's Square at Vatican

The Lord does not discard the elderly, says Pope Francis

While the Holy Father spoke today at the general audience about being a member of an age group with a special grace and mission, he has also revealed he himself hopes for a pain-free death

Pope Francis has told the elderly that, while society tends to discard them, the Lord does not.

For the second week running, the Holy Father used his general audience to focus on grandparents and the elderly. Speaking to assembled pilgrims from across the world who came to Rome’s St Peter’s Square, the Pope said that he is a member an age group that contains a special grace and mission. It is not time for that age group to give up and be marginalised, he said.

“I still treasure the words my grandmother wrote to me on the day of my ordination,” the Pope told the pilgrims. “I carry them with me to this day inside my breviary.

“The Gospel offers us the image of Simeon and Anna as two older persons who hope in the Lord’s promises and then, when perhaps least expected, see them at last fulfilled. Simeon and Anna are models of a spirituality for the elderly.

“They point to the centrality of prayer; indeed, the prayer of grandparents is a great grace for families and for the Church. In prayer, they thank the Lord for his blessings, otherwise so often unacknowledged; intercede for the hopes and needs of the young; and lift up to God the memory and sacrifices of past generations.

“The purifying power of faith and prayer also helps us to find the wisest way to teach the young that the true meaning of life is found in self-sacrificing love and concern for others. In a society which overlooks and even discards the elderly, may the Church acknowledge their contribution and gifts, and help them to foster a fruitful dialogue between the generations!”

The Pope has also been candid about ageing and dying in a newspaper interview with an Argentinian shanty town’s community paper.

“Look, life is in God’s hands. I told the Lord: ‘You are taking care of me. But if your will is that I die or that they do something to me, I ask you only one favour: That it doesn’t hurt. Because I’m a big coward when it comes to physical pain,’” the Pope told La Carcova News in light-hearted, off-the-cuff comments in an interview published this month.




Leave a Reply

latest news

Celtic’s new number 11: Lourdes volunteer presents grandson’s gift to Pope Francis

April 12th, 2019 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS

A seven-year-old boy from Glasgow and his Lourdes volunteer grandmother...

Glasgow parishioners call on council to protect parish from ‘intimidating’ Orange walk during Easter celebrations

April 12th, 2019 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS

Parishioners at two Glasgow parishes are urging councillors to ­protect...

Scotland’s first deacon in modern times dies aged 94

April 12th, 2019 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS

Deacon Jacques Cooke: December 16 1924¬—March 25 2019. — By Bill Mowat ...

Bishop’s praise after donations helps diocese reduce budget deficit

April 12th, 2019 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS

The bishop of Argyll and the Isles has issued a...

Social media

Latest edition


exclusively in the paper

  • Parish refurb set to ‘light up Bishopbriggs’
  • Help boost pro-life vigil as Easter approaches
  • A moveable feast built upon a rock, By Gerald Warner
  • Hugh Dougherty explores how we can fill the pews on a Sunday
  • In the last of his Saintly Journeys through Lent series, Dr Harry Schnitker looks at the saints who have shown us the way of contrition

Previous editions

Previous editions of the Scottish Catholic Observer newspaper are only available to subscribed Members. To download previous editions of the paper, please subscribe.

note: registered members only.

Read the SCO