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This is Pope Francis’ prayer intention for the month of July

This is Pope Francis’ prayer intention for the month of July

Pope Francis prays during his general audience on Wednesday, May 29, 2024, in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican. / Credit: Vatican Media

CNA Staff, Jul 2, 2024 / 14:15 pm (CNA).

Pope Francis’ prayer intention for the month of July is for the pastoral care of the sick.

“The anointing of the sick is not a sacrament only for those who are at the point of death. No. It is important that this is clear,” the Holy Father said in a video message released July 2.

“When the priest draws near a person to perform the anointing of the sick, it is not necessarily to help them say goodbye to life. Thinking this way means giving up every hope,” he said, adding: “It means taking for granted that after the priest the undertaker will arrive.”

The pope urged the faithful to “remember that the anointing of the sick is one of the ‘sacraments of healing,’ of ‘restoration,’ that heals the spirit.”

“And when a person is very ill, it’s advisable to give them the anointing of the sick. And when someone is elderly, it’s good that they receive the anointing of the sick,” he said.

He concluded with a prayer: “Let us pray that the sacrament of the anointing of the sick grant the Lord’s strength to those who receive it and to their loved ones, and that it may become for everyone an ever more visible sign of compassion and hope.”

Pope Francis’ prayer video is promoted by the Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network, which raises awareness of monthly papal prayer intentions.

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