During his Angelus address on November 12, Pope Francis imparted an insightful message on the significance of nurturing our inner selves over outward appearances.
Addressing the faithful in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis used the parable of the ten virgins awaiting the bridegroom to underscore the difference between mere good intentions and actual preparation.
In the parable, the wise virgins who brought extra oil for their lamps were ready for the bridegroom’s arrival, unlike their unprepared counterparts. This difference, Pope Francis emphasized, illustrates the importance of nurturing what is internal and often unseen — the ‘oil’ of our souls.
He cautioned against the modern-day obsession with image and external appearances, urging us to foster a robust inner life instead. “It is the stewardship of the inner life,” he said, stressing the need to listen to our hearts, reflect on our thoughts and feelings, and embrace silence.
This inner cultivation, according to Pope Francis, is not just an occasional endeavor but requires daily dedication and attention.
He said we should ask “How is the oil of my soul?” to better understand the state of our spiritual preparedness and inner growth, urging the faithful to prioritize the care of their hearts, prayer, and service to others, alongside their worldly plans and goals.
In closing, he invoked Our Lady’s assistance in helping us cherish and cultivate the ‘oil’ of our inner lives.
Pope Francis’s message serves as a timely reminder of the essential need for inner reflection and spiritual readiness in a world preoccupied with superficiality!
Lord, hear our prayer!
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