During a time of global pandemic, Pope Francis has prayed that all of those facing fears will find the strength to conquer them.
“In these days there’s so much suffering. There’s a lot of fear,” Vatican news cites Pope Francis as saying during his homily at the Casa Santa Marta chapel in the Vatican on March 26.
“The fear of the elderly who are alone in nursing homes, or hospitals, or in their own homes, and don’t know what will happen. The fear of those who don’t have regular jobs and are thinking about how to feed their children. They foresee they may go hungry,” the pope said.
“The fear of many civil servants. At this moment they’re working to keep society functioning and they might get sick. There’s also the fear, the fears, of each one of us. Each one knows what their own fears are,” he said.
“We pray to the Lord that He might help us to trust, and to tolerate and conquer these fears,” Pope Francis said.
Throughout the course of the new coronavirus pandemic, Pope Francis has regularly addressed Catholics from behind closed doors as the Vatican remains in lockdown. He has offered his prayers for new coronavirus victims, the elderly suffering from loneliness, those who have been placed in difficult financial straits, and for healthcare workers and public servants battling to stop the spread of the disease.
He has also offered a message of hope, asking Catholics to use these difficult times of quarantine to develop a new closeness with each other and the world.
Meanwhile, Italy continues to struggle to get a grip on the new coronavirus, with 712 deaths and 6,153 infections registered over a 24 hour period on March 27, Reuters reports.
Those upticks in the death and infection tolls bring the national tally to 8,215 and 80,539, respectively.
The rise in infections and fatalities comes despite the fact that Italy has been implanting a progressively more stringent quarantine regime since Feb. 23 to help stop the spread of the virus.
On March 27, Pope Francis donated 30 respirators to hospitals worst hit by the pandemic.
A statement from the office of the papal Almoner, Cardinal Konrad Krajewski, did not specify where the respirators would be sent.