Vatican City, Nov 2, 2020 / 10:00 am
Pope Francis visited a cemetery in Vatican City to pray on All Souls’ Day Monday and offered Mass for the faithful departed.
“‘Hope does not disappoint,’ St. Paul tells us. Hope attracts us and gives meaning to life … hope is a gift from God that draws us towards life, towards eternal joy. Hope is an anchor that we have on the other side,” Pope Francis said in his homily Nov. 2.
The pope offered Mass for the souls of the faithful departed at the Church of Our Lady of Mercy in the Teutonic Cemetery in Vatican City. Afterwards, he paused to pray at the tombs in the Teutonic Cemetery and then visited the crypt of St. Peter’s Basilica to spend a moment in prayer for the souls of the deceased popes who are buried there.
Pope Francis prayed for all the dead in the prayers of the faithful at Mass, including “the dead without face, without voice, and without name, so that God the Father may welcome them into eternal peace, where there is no longer either anxiety or pain.”
In his off-the-cuff homily, the pope said: “This is the goal of hope: to go to Jesus.”
On All Souls’ Day and throughout the month of November, the Church makes a special effort to remember, honor and pray for the dead. There are many different cultural traditions around this period, but one of the most consistently honored is the practice of visiting cemeteries.