Pope calls for Easter truce in Palm Sunday Vatican service

Monday, April 11, 2022
author picture Lina Fontaine
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Pope Calls For Easter Tract in Palm Sunday Vatican Service

The Holy Week leading to Easter is an important time for the Church to encourage peace and reconciliation. Pope Francis held his first public liturgy in St. Peter's Square since the COVID-19 pandemic. The Pope spoke of the horrors of war and the need to work towards peace. During the Palm Sunday Vatican service‚ tens of thousands of tourists and pilgrims held braided palms in St. Peter's Square. Palms are traditionally held in remembrance of the time when Jesus' followers spread palm branches at his feet.

Holy Week leading up to Easter

As the Holy Week leading up to Easter approaches‚ many are asking: Will the Pope's call for an Easter truce in Ukraine help the situation there? He also asked whether planting a victory flag on rubble is a true gesture. The Holy Father has repeatedly condemned Russia's invasion of Ukraine. But his call for a truce could prove difficult to deliver. On Palm Sunday‚ he urged peace and urged real negotiations. The traditional procession led by the Pope was a little different on Palm Sunday this year. He skipped the traditional procession to the obelisk and instead stood near the altar. He was accompanied by an aide to help him if needed. In his homily‚ the Pope evoked the horrors of war‚ speaking of mothers mourning the unjust death of their husbands and sons. He also spoke of refugees holding babies in their arms‚ young people denied a future and soldiers killing their fellow men and women.

Pope Francis' first public liturgy in St. Peter's Square since COVID-19 pandemic

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic‚ papal liturgies were limited‚ and many events were relocated to St. Peter's Basilica. The current Vatican schedule does not list the pope's participation in Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord's Supper. However‚ the Pope has made a habit of visiting prisons and rehabilitation centers to offer the Lord's Supper. In order to avoid crowds‚ Pope Francis had to make some deliberate decisions. He wanted people to feel close to him in their pain and suffering‚ and tens of thousands of people responded by praying for him. The dialogue continued on social media and influenced the planning of papal liturgies‚ down to the positioning of video cameras‚ the choice of music‚ and the pace of the commentators. A new schedule has been released by the Vatican‚ allowing for large-scale celebrations in St. Peter's Square once again. In addition to Easter mass‚ Pope Francis will again preside over the Stations of the Cross‚ the traditional paschal celebration that took place in the Colosseum in Rome. On Palm Sunday‚ April 10‚ the Pope will preside over the Stations of the Cross at 10 a.m. local time. The Pope has held Palm Sunday mass in St. Peter's Square since 1999. In his homily‚ Pope Francis also spoke of the suffering in the world from war and the folly of war. He prayed for those suffering in poverty‚ displaced persons‚ and migrants in need of a new home. He also prayed for law enforcement and doctors‚ who were busy saving lives. The Pope also prayed for the sick and the homeless‚ which are not always able to find refuge. The Vatican has been preparing to stream services in St. Peter's Basilica. Security measures imposed for the COVID-19 pandemic have eased in recent weeks. Guards in hazmat suits swept the square for suspected cases of the disease‚ but the early Mass was attended by some faithful. In one report‚ Lucina Wodzisz reported that she was not wearing a face mask and that the priest did not wear latex gloves.

Sermon by Pope Francis on horrors of war

In his Palm Sunday homily‚ Pope Francis lamented the horrors of war and hatred in the world‚ speaking of the latest vile attack on a civilian population in Syria. He also addressed the litany of suffering around the world‚ describing refugees fleeing bombs with children in their arms. He spoke of the efforts of humanitarian workers‚ who risk their lives to save others‚ and he urged people to hold on to their faith despite the perils they face. In the homily‚ the Pope recalled the horrors of war‚ and emphasized that the Christian faith cannot be influenced by these tragedies. He noted the devastating effects of war in his life‚ as well as the suffering of millions around the world. He said that the horrors of war make Christ crucifixion. At the same time‚ war is a sin against the poor and vulnerable. The Ukrainian crisis has prompted the Pope to call for an Easter truce in Ukraine. He also condemned the folly of planting a victory flag on the rubble of a country whose people have fought for years. The Easter truce called for by Pope Francis should be accompanied by genuine negotiations rather than military action. The Pope did not mention Russia by name‚ but he called for the peace process to begin immediately. While the Palm Sunday service is more than an hour long‚ the congregation is invited to attend the service in a procession‚ representing the tens of thousands of people who met Jesus in Jerusalem. During the Passion narrative‚ the priests will read the Gospel instead of the usual reading. Despite this‚ some of the priests are under house arrest or incommunicado.

Missing procession from obelisk to altar on steps of St Peter's Basilica

The crucifixion of St. Peter is depicted on a 13th-century bronze statue on the steps of St. Peter's Basilica. The foot is extended‚ and pilgrims touch it‚ sometimes mistaken for the tomb of St. Peter. The crucifixion is based on the story of St. Helena and her Trophaen. Pope Francis was not in attendance at the Easter ceremony last year‚ citing the need to keep his health in check. He limped during Mass and missed the traditional procession from the obelisk to the altar on the steps of the basilica. The event‚ which is normally attended by millions‚ is meant to send a message of hope for the world. In the 15th century‚ the St. Peter's Basilica was threatened with falling down. It was built in the 1500s but was not officially consecrated until 1626. The basilica is about twice the size of the National Cathedral in Washington‚ D.C.‚ and the square around it can hold up to 150‚000 people. It is also home to Michelangelo's Pieta‚ the world's most famous work of art. Despite Bernini's contribution to the Vatican‚ many visitors still don't realize he was working on a huge open space for worship. This space would enhance the grandeur of St. Peter's and would feature four large pillars supporting it. It would look like two giant arms welcoming people to the Cathedral. The obelisk‚ in particular‚ was moved to its current location in 1586. In addition‚ the space around the obelisk was built around it‚ so that the entire structure surrounded it. The Chapter of St. Peter's‚ or the missing procession from the obelisk to the altar on the steps of St Peter's Basilica‚ is a very rare text and has been the subject of little study. As the only known eyewitness account of the basilica before its destruction‚ the text is a remarkable piece of modern humanist history.