We have to be vigilant in order to not fall into vanity, fixating on appearances and living superficially, Francis stated.
Jesus, by telling the story of the poor widow, shows us the path to healing from clericalism and hypocrisy, he said.
“The sound of her few coins is more beautiful than the grandiose offerings of the rich, since they express a life sincerely dedicated to God, a faith that does not live by appearances but by unconditional trust. Let us learn from her: a faith without external frills, but interiorly sincere; a faith composed of humble love for God and for our brothers and sisters.”
After praying the Angelus, Pope Francis noted his concern for conflict in the region of the Horn of Africa, especially in Ethiopia. “I invite everyone to pray for those peoples who are so severely tried, and I renew my appeal that fraternal harmony and the peaceful way of dialogue prevail,” he said.
The pope also said he is praying for the victims of a Nov. 5 fuel explosion on the outskirts of Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone.
According to Reuters, local authorities have reported that at least 99 people were killed and more than 100 injured when a fuel tanker exploded after a collision late on Friday.
The accident has caused an even greater strain on the city’s health system, which was still suffering from underfunding and a lack of doctors following the 2014-2016 Ebola epidemic.
Pope Francis also noted the Nov. 6 beatification of three Capuchin Friars Minor who were killed in Manresa, Spain, in 1936.
The friars Fr. Josep Domenech Bonet, Joseph Oriol, and Domènech de Sant Pere de Riudebitlles “were killed in the period of religious persecution of the last century in Spain, proving to be meek and courageous witnesses of Christ,” the pope said.
“May their example help Christians today to remain faithful to their vocation, even in times of trial.”