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Marking the two-year anniversary of the worldwide moment of prayer that Pope Francis led at the beginning of the pandemic, two Vatican offices produced a video reflection on that evening and the Pope’s invitation.
The Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development and the Dicastery for Communication released the video on March 27, two years after that extraordinary “urbi et orbi” blessing.
The hour-long service that evening was marked by the dramatic emptiness of St. Peter’s Square and Basilica, with the rain adding to the solemnity. Never in history has a similar ceremony occurred, with the graces of the extraordinary “urbi et orbi” blessing being received almost entirely by people tuned in through the live broadcast. The choice of giving that blessing on that occasion was an absolutely unique way of making Christ present.
The Pope’s homily reflected on how Coronavirus united us in our common humanity, as brothers and sisters.
“We have realized that we are on the same boat, all of us fragile and disoriented, but at the same time important and needed, all of us called to row together,” he said.
The video released on the two-year anniversary combines images from that evening of prayer, with families and children, offering an invitation to hope. At the end, it invites a common commitment, to lead to peace.
After praying the midday Angelus today, the Holy Father noted that evening, and announced that a book would be distributed to the faithful, to help them pray in times of difficulty.
Just two years ago, from this very Plaza, we raised our supplication for the end of the pandemic. Today we did it for the end of the war in Ukraine. As you leave the Square, you will be offered a book, created by the Vatican Commission Covid-19 with the Dicastery for Communication, to invite you to pray in times of difficulty, without fear, always having faith in the Lord.