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An estimated 20,000 visitors in St Peter’s Square at the Vatican pray the Angelus with Pope Francis on the feast of All Saint yesterday (CNS photo/Lola Gomez)

Holiness is a gift everyone receives with Baptism, and it is a journey to be made together with the help of the saints in heaven, Pope Francis said on the Feast of All Saints yesterday. Source: OSV News.

The saints “are our elder brothers and sisters, on whom we can always count”, he said before reciting the Angelus with an estimated crowd of 20,000 people in St Peter’s Square yesterday. 

“They support us and, when we take a wrong turn along the way, with their silent presence they never fail to correct us; they are sincere friends, whom we can trust, because they desire our wellbeing,” he said.

“Holiness is a gift from God which we have received with baptism,” Pope Francis said. “If we let it grow, it can completely change our life.”

“Therefore, saints are not unreachable or distant heroes, but people like us,” he said, “whose starting point is the same gift we have received – baptism.”

In fact, he said, people today have certainly met what he likes to call the “saints next door,” that is, people “who genuinely and with simplicity live a Christian life” as part of their “normal” everyday lives.

“Every gift, however, must be accepted,” he said. It comes with “the responsibility of a response” and “the invitation to commit oneself so that it is not squandered”.

Holiness, therefore, is also a journey “to be made together, helping each other, united with those excellent companions who are the saints,” he said.

Pope Francis invited Catholics to get to know the lives of the saints, “to be moved by their examples” and “to turn to them in prayer”.


Learn about the lives of saints, be moved by their examples, Pope says (By Carol Glatz, CNS via OSV News)