On All Saints Day Friday, Pope Francis offered the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass at a Roman cemetery, and preached on the importance of hope in life and in death for a Christian. “To see God, to be similar to God: this is our hope. And today, precisely on the day of the Saints and before the day for the dead, it is necessary to think a little about hope: this hope that accompanies us in life,” the Pope said on All Saints Day at Verano Cemetery in Rome.
“The first Christians depicted hope like an anchor, as if life had cast the anchor into the river of Heaven and all of us journeying towards this river were clinging to the anchor’s rope,” the Holy Father said. “This is a beautiful image of hope: to have the heart anchored there where our ancestors are, where the Saints are, where Jesus is, where God is. This is the hope that does not disappoint.”
The feasts of All Saints and All Souls are "days of hope," the Pontiff reflected, “there are moments of difficulty in life, but with hope the soul moves forward and looks toward that which awaits us,” the Pope preached. Discussing the means of getting into Heaven, Francis said that we “only thanks to the blood of the Lamb, thanks to the blood of Christ. It is truly the blood of Christ that has justified us, that has opened the door of Heaven.” The saints are "our brothers and sisters who are in the presence of God, and we hope to be with them there through the pure grace of God, if we walk along the path of Jesus.”
Preaching as the sun began to set in the west over the Roman sky, the Pope reflected on our own sunset of life on this earth. “In this pre-sunset of today, each of us can think of the sunset of our own life: ‘How will my sunset be?’ Do we regard it with hope?” asked Francis. “Do we regard it with that joy of being welcomed by the Lord? This is a Christian thought, that gives us peace,” Francis preached.
“Today is a day of joy. We think of the sunset of many brothers and sisters who have preceded us, we think of our own sunset, which will come. And we think of our heart, and ask ourselves, ‘Where is my heart anchored?’ If it has not been anchored well, anchor it there, in that river, knowing that hope does not disappoint because the Lord Jesus does not disappoint,” preached the Pontiff.