(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis said the cornerstone of life for Christians is Jesus who is praying for us, pointing out that Jesus always turned to prayer at all the key moments in his life. His remarks came during his Mass celebrated on Friday morning in the chapel of the Santa Marta residence.
Taking his cue from the Gospel reading recounting how Jesus spent the night in prayer before choosing his disciples, the Pope’s homily reflected on the fundamental importance of prayer for Christians. He said whilst Jesus is the cornerstone of the Church and there is no Church without Him, the key to this cornerstone is Jesus who is praying for us.
The cornerstone of the Church is Jesus in front of the Father who is praying for us
“‘Jesus went up to the mountain to pray and he spent the night in prayer to God.’ And then the rest followed, the crowds, the choosing of his disciples, the healings, the casting out of demons… Yes, the cornerstone is Jesus but Jesus who prays. Jesus is praying. He prayed and he continues to pray for the Church. The cornerstone of the Church is our Lord in front of the Father who intercedes on our behalf, who is praying for us. We pray to Him but the key thing is that He is praying for us.”
Our security is Jesus praying for each one of us
Pope Francis went on to describe how Jesus always prayed for his followers, be it at the Last Supper or before performing a miracle such as when he prayed to the Father before raising Lazarus from the dead.
“Jesus prayed on the Mount of Olives, on the Cross, he ended praying: his life ended in prayer. And this is our security, this is our foundation, this is our cornerstone: Jesus who is praying for us! Jesus who is praying for me! And each of us can say this: I am certain that Jesus is praying for me; that he is in front of the Father and naming me. This is the cornerstone of the Church: Jesus in prayer.”
Another example of Jesus praying for his followers, said the Pope, came before his Passion when Jesus told Peter he had been praying for him to withstand Satan’s temptation and for his faith to hold firm.
“And what Jesus tells Peter, he tells you and you and me, everybody: ‘I have prayed for you, I am praying for you, I am now praying for you’ and when He comes onto the altar, He comes to intercede, to pray for us. As he did on the Cross. And this gives us a great sense of security. I belong to this community that’s solid because Jesus is its cornerstone, Jesus who is praying for me, who is praying for us. Today we’d do well to reflect on the Church, reflect on this mystery of the Church. We are all like a building but its foundation is Jesus, Jesus who is praying for us, Jesus who is praying for me.”
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