After a Rosary in St. Peter’s Square to mark the end of May, Pope Francis asked people to “listen, decide, and take action” like Mary did.
“Listen to everyday reality, to people, to the facts because the Lord is at our door and knocks in many ways, he places signs in our path; he give us the ability to see them,” the Pope said in front of thousands of pilgrims, following the 8:00 p.m. Rosary.
He spoke about the Gospel reading for May 31 that recounted Mary visiting her cousin Elizabeth, who was pregnant with John the Baptist.
Cardinal Angelo Comastri, the Vatican City State’s vicar general and Archpriest of St. Peter’s Basilica, led the Rosary at 8:00 p.m.
During the celebration, the statue of the Virgin was carried in procession around the different parts of St. Peter’s Square.
Pope Francis said Mary’s attitude can be summed up as listening, deciding and acting, and it indicates a road for us “in front of what the Lord asks of us in life.”
He explained that listening relates to “attention, acceptance, and openness to God” and not “the careless way in which sometimes we put ourselves in front of the Lord or others.”
Mary’s decisiveness, the Pope taught, was present when she refused to be carried away by events.
“In life it is difficult to make decisions, we often tend to postpone them, to let others decide for us,” he said.
“We often prefer to get carried away by events and follow the fashion of the moment,” he added.
The pontiff noted, “sometimes we know what we should do, but we do not have the courage to do it or it seems too difficult because it means going against the current.”
But he believes Mary was decisive, especially on two occasions: when she listened to God and visited Elizabeth despite being pregnant herself and when she relied on her son to “save the joy of the wedding.”
As for the third characteristic of Mary’s attitude, action, Pope Francis explained that one should not hesitate when one knows God’s will, and only meditate if it remains unclear.
“Mary is not in a hurry … she does not get carried away by events, but when it’s clear what God asks of her she does it quickly,” he remarked.
“Sometimes, we also stop listening, stop reflecting on what we should do and perhaps it’s even clear to us the decision we should make, but we do not make the transition to action,” stated the Pope.
Instead, he counseled, we should “move quickly toward others to give them our help, our understanding and our charity.”
“To give them, like Mary, that which we have of most value and have received, Jesus and his Gospel, with the word and especially with the concrete testimony of our actions,” he said.
Pope Francis then invoked Mary’s intercession so that God may “open our ears,” so that he may give us “courage to take decisions,” and so that we “may move quickly toward others in charity.”