"It is not just a matter of bearing the daily tribulations with patience, but of bearing with faith and responsibility that part of the effort and that part of suffering that the struggle against evil entails," he said.
"Thus the task of 'taking up the cross' becomes participating with Christ in the salvation of the world," he said. "Considering this, we allow the cross hanging on the wall at home, or that little one that we wear around our neck, to be a sign of our wish to be united with Christ in lovingly serving our brothers and sisters, especially the least and most fragile."
"Each time we fix our gaze on the image of Christ crucified, let us contemplate that he, as the true Servant of the Lord, has accomplished his mission, giving life, spilling his blood for the pardoning of sins," he said, praying that the Virgin Mary would intercede to "help us not to retreat in the face of the trials and suffering that witnessing to the Gospel entails for all of us."
After the Angelus, Pope Francis noted his concern for "tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean area, undermined by various outbreaks of instability." His comments referred to growing tensions between Turkey and Greece over energy resources in the East Mediterranean waters.
"Please, I appeal to constructive dialogue and respect for international law to resolve the conflicts that threaten the peace of the peoples of that region," he urged.
Francis also noted the upcoming celebration of the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, which will take place Sept. 1.
"From this date, until October 4th, we will celebrate the 'Jubilee of the Earth' with our Christian brothers of various churches and traditions, to commemorate the institution, 50 years ago, of Earth Day," he said.