In his Angelus address, the pope reflected on the Gospel account of Jesus restoring sight to Bartimaeus, a blind man begging by the roadside.“His blindness was the tip of the iceberg; but there must have been wounds, humiliations, broken dreams, mistakes, remorse in his heart,” the pope said.
According to the Gospel of Mark, Bartimaeus called out to Jesus and said: “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me.”
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Pope Francis said: “Jesus hears, and immediately stops. God always listens to the cry of the poor … He realizes it is full of faith, a faith that is not afraid to insist, to knock on the door of God’s heart.”
The pope said that Bartimaeus asked “for everything from the One who can do everything.”
“He asks for mercy on his person, on his life. It is not a small request, but it is so beautiful because it is a cry for mercy, that is, compassion, God’s mercy, his tenderness.”
Pope Francis encouraged people to make the prayer of Bartimaeus their own by bringing their own “wounds, humiliations, broken dreams, mistakes, remorse” to God in prayer and repeating: “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me.”
“We must ask everything of Jesus, who can do everything. … He cannot wait to pour out his grace and joy into our hearts; but unfortunately, it is we who keep our distance, through timidness, laziness or unbelief,” he said.
“May Bartimaeus, with his concrete, insistent and courageous faith, be an example for us. And may Our Lady, the prayerful Virgin, teach us to turn to God with all our heart, confident that He listens attentively to every prayer,” Pope Francis said.
Courtney Mares is a Rome Correspondent for Catholic News Agency. A graduate of Harvard University, she has reported from news bureaus on three continents and was awarded the Gardner Fellowship for her work with North Korean refugees.