At his weekly General Audience on Wednesday, Pope Francis continued his series of catechetical reflections on the Creed, focusing this week on the Communion of Saints. In the English-language synthesis of the Holy Father’s remarks read out following the main catechesis in Italian, Pope Francis writes, “The Catechism of the Catholic Church reminds us that the Communion of Saints is a communion “in holy things” and “among holy persons” (No. 948).
The Holy Father’s remarks go on to say that the Communion of Saints is the deepest reality of the Church, because in Christ, through Baptism, we are made sharers in the communion of life and love which is the Blessed Trinity. As such, we are united to one another in the Body of Christ. Through this fraternal communion we draw nearer to God and we are called to support one another spiritually. The communion of saints does not only embrace the Church on earth; it also embraces all who have died in Christ, the souls in purgatory and the saints in heaven.
Pope Francis’s remarks go on to say that that we experience this solidarity between heaven and earth in our intercessory prayer and in the feasts of All Saints and All Souls which we shall soon celebrate. “As we rejoice in this great mystery,” his remarks conclude, “let us ask the Lord to draw us ever closer to Him and to all our brothers and sisters in the Church.”
Pope Francis appealed for peace in Iraq.The Holy Father made his appeal at the close of his weekly General Audience, before greeting Iraqi civil authorities and representatives of the various religious groups which, said Pope Francis, “constitute the richness of the country.” The Iraqi delegation was accompanied by the President of the Pontifical Council for Inter religious Dialogue, Card. Jean-Louis Tauran.
Pope Francis said, “I invite you all to pray for the dear nation of Iraq, unfortunately affected daily by tragic episodes of violence, in order that Iraq might find the way that leads to reconciliation, peace, unity and stability.” At least a dozen incidents claimed scores of lives in Iraq this past weekend - the latest in a wave of deadly violence that has been on the rise since April of this year.