Vatican City, May 2, 2021 / 05:30 am
It is our task as Christians to proclaim the good news of the Gospel and to bear the good fruit of love in the world, Pope Francis said at his Regina caeli address on Sunday.
"The fruit that, like the branches, we must give, bears witness to our Christian life," the pope said May 2.
"After Jesus ascended to the Father, it is the task of the disciples – it is our task – to continue to proclaim the Gospel in words and in deeds," he added. "And they and us, disciples of Jesus, do so by bearing witness to his love: the fruit to be borne is love."
Francis gave his weekly Sunday reflection from a window overlooking St. Peter's Square. Afterward, he led the recitation of the Regina caeli, a Marian prayer said during the Easter season.
The pope explained the importance of being attached to Christ, the vine, so that "we receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit, and in this way we can do good to our neighbor and do good to society, to the Church."
"We recognize the tree by its fruits," he stated. "A truly Christian life bears witness to Christ."
Pope Francis' meditation centered on the day's Gospel reading from St. John, in which Jesus tells his disciples "I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever remains in me and I in him will bear much fruit, because without me you can do nothing."
"The Lord presents himself as the true vine, and speaks of us as the branches that cannot live without being united to him," the pope said, noting that Jesus used the verb "to abide," also sometimes translated as "to remain," seven times in the Gospel reading.