In his address for today’s Wednesday General Audience, Pope Francis invited pilgrims to reflect on the suffering and the wounds of Jesus, especially as Christians prepare to commemorate Good Friday, the day Jesus was crucified. The Pope said that Holy Week is a good time for people to reflect on the meaning of evil and suffering in the world, because Jesus endured evil and suffering for our sake and for each one of us. “This week, it will do good for us all to look to the Crucifix, kissing the wounds of Jesus, kissing the Crucifix. He has taken upon himself the whole of human suffering,” the Holy Father said on Wednesday. “Jesus reaches complete humiliation,” the Pope explained, saying that the death he endured was one for slaves and for criminals, even though he was “considered a prophet” by some.
“Looking at Jesus in his passion, we see as in a mirror also the suffering of all humanity and find the divine answer to the mystery of evil, of suffering, of death,” the Pope explained. “Many times we experience horror in the face of the evil and suffering that surrounds us, and we ask: why does God permit it? It's a deep wound for us to see suffering and death, especially that of the innocent!,” Francis exclaimed.
The question burns most especially when we see or are aware of children suffering, the Pope explained, and said that “Jesus takes all this evil, all this suffering, upon himself. Really, we don't have many explanations; it's a puzzling mystery. ‘For God has so loved the world that he gave his only son.’ This week we think so much of the pain of Jesus, and we tell ourselves: ‘this is for me. Even if I had been the only person in the world, He would have done it,’” the Pope taught.“’He did it for me.’ And we kiss the Crucifix and say: ‘For me. Thank you, Jesus. For me.’”