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Pope Francis blesses a member of the National Association of Hispanic Priests at the Vatican’s Apostolic Palace yesterday (CNS/Vatican Media)

The daily rhythm of the life of a priest should resemble “ping pong” – praying on one’s knees before the tabernacle, helping those in need and returning to prayer, Pope Francis said yesterday. Source: NCR Online. 

“Do not leave those who suffer alone; do not leave the Lord in the tabernacle alone. Convince yourselves that you cannot do anything with your hands unless you do it on your knees,” the Pope told members of the National Association of Hispanic Priests during an audience in the Apostolic Palace.

“It’s like ping pong, one thing leads to the other,” the Pope said.

Priests in the group had been invited to send the Pope questions in advance. He prepared a general response but added liberally to his prepared text.

Meeting the priests in the Clementine Hall, a room ornately decorated with marble and frescoes, Francis told them to “beware of ecclesiastical elegance” because concern for keeping churches pristine increases the temptation to keep the doors closed and “that won’t do.”

During the US National Eucharistic Revival and with preparations well underway for the National Eucharistic Congress in July 2024, the Pope focused his remarks on the importance of eucharistic adoration and the essential tie between reverencing the Eucharist and serving one’s brothers and sisters.

Francis said he did not want to make anyone “blush,” so he would not ask the priests how many hours a week they spend in adoration, but “I’ll throw the question out there”.

In the busy life of a priest, there are many possible excuses for limiting time in private prayer, he said. “But if you don’t pray, if you don’t adore, your life is worth little.”


Eucharistic adoration, charity, promoting justice are connected, Pope says (By Cindy Wooden, CNS via NCR Online)