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Always be vigilant against evil, Pope Francis tells faithful

Pope Francis (CNS)

The devil is “always lying in wait by our door”, Pope Francis told the faithful gathered in St Peter’s Square.

After reciting the Angelus on the first Sunday of the New Year, Pope Francis reflected on the the day’s reading from the first chapter of St John’s Gospel, in which “the Word … was made flesh, and dwelt among us”.

“The mystery of evil insinuates itself into our lives and that demands vigilance and care on our part so that it will not prevail,” Francis said.

“The book of Genesis says – in a good phrase that makes us understand this – it says that evil ‘lies in wait at our door’. Woe to us if we allow it to enter; it would then close our door to anyone else. Instead we are called to throw open the door of our heart to the Word of God, to Jesus, in order thus to become His children.”

He continued: “If we welcome Him, if we welcome Jesus, we will grow in understanding and in the love of the Lord, we will learn to be merciful as He is. Especially in this Holy Year of Mercy, let us make sure that the Gospel becomes ever more incarnate in our own lives too.”

The Pope urged Catholics to “draw near to the Gospel and meditate on it”, adding that “incarnating it in daily life is the best way to understand Jesus and bring Him to others”.

“This is the vocation and the joy of every baptised person: showing Jesus and giving Him to others; but to do that we have to know Him and have Him within us, as the Lord of our life. And He will defend us from evil, from the devil. He is always lying in wait by our door, and wants to enter,” the Pontiff said.