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Man disturbs general audience with shouts; Pope prays for him

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Antoine Mekary | ALETEIA

Ary Waldir Ramos Diaz - published on 02/02/22

Let us not be deaf to our brothers and sisters in need, urges the Pope.

A man shouted out during the Pope’s address at the general audience on February 2, interrupting the usual tranquility of the Holy Father’s weekly meeting that is open to all who wish to participate.

Pope Francis ended his address asking the faithful to open their hearts and their ears to this “brother who suffers.”

He urged the faithful not to be “deaf” to the needs of those who suffer, and he lead a Hail Mary for the person, who “poor man, if he shouted out it’s because he suffers,” the Pope said. Perhaps he lives “overwhelmed by a problem – spiritual, physical, psychological – let us pray to the Virgin Mary for him.”

The man was wearing a mask and then took it off, as he shouted out incomprehensibly in English, according to Eva Fernández, a journalist who was present. Others said he was shouting in Italian, and said, “This is not the Church of God,” and repeatedly said the word mask.

The interruption came near the end of the Pope’s reflection on the Communion of Saints. The man, who was seated away from other pilgrims at the back of the hall, was “accompanied,” but without force, by the gendarme and a Swiss Guard, out of Paul VI Hall.

According to a Vatican source, the individual is already known to Vatican police. Described as “visibly disturbed,” he already brought the attention of authorities in the Basilicas of Saint Peter and Saint Mary Major – but when the Pope was not present.

A ‘challenge’ to St. Joseph

The Holy Father had ended his catechesis with a prayer to St. Joseph, as he has been doing during each of the sessions that he’s dedicated to the father of Jesus.

This prayer is one that he’s shared before as a prayer that he’s said for more than 40 years, and which he said he likes because it’s a “challenge” to the powerful saint.

Here is the prayer:

Glorious Patriarch Saint Joseph, whose power makes the impossible possible, come to my aid in these times of anguish and difficulty.
Take under your protection the serious and troubling situations that I commend to you, that they may have a happy outcome.
My beloved father, all my trust is in you. Let it not be said that I invoked you in vain, and since you can do everything with Jesus and Mary, show me that your goodness is as great as your power. Amen.

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