VATICAN CITY (AP) – Pope Francis is cautioning against pessimism as many people emerge from coronavirus lockdowns to lament that nothing will ever be the same.
During Mass in St. Peterâ€™s Basilica to mark Pentecost Sunday, Francis noted a tendency to say â€œnothing will return as before.â€ That kind of thinking, Francis said, guarantees that â€œthe one thing that certainly does not return is hope.â€
He took to task his own church for its fragmentation, saying it must pull together.
â€œThe world sees conservatives and progressivesâ€ but instead all are â€œchildren of God,” he said, telling the faithful to focus on what unites them.
â€œIn this pandemic, how wrong narcissism is,â€ Francis said, lamenting â€œthe tendency to think only of our needs, to be indifferent to those of others, and to not admit our own frailties and mistakes.â€
â€œAt this moment, in the great effort of beginning anew, how damaging is pessimism, the tendency to see everything in the worst light and to keep saying that nothing will return as before!â€ the pope said. â€œWhen someone thinks this way, the one thing that certainly does not return is hope.”
A few dozen faithful, wearing masks and sitting one to a pew, attended the ceremony as part of safety measures to avoid spreading COVID-19.
While the Vatican has re-opened the basilica to tourists, the rank-and-file faithful still aren’t allowed yet to attend Masses celebrated by the pope for fear of crowding.