Pope Francis celebrated his final major Mass in Ecuador. He wore vestments that bore resemblance to what Pope John Paul II wore thirty years ago during a visit to the same country. The chasuble was woven by native artisans. It included a lily symbol, which represents Saint Marianita of Jesus.
The celebration took place at Bicentennial Park, a place that commemorates Ecuador's two hundred years of independence from Spain. Pope Francis alluded to this fact at the start of his Homily.
"The bicentennial which this Park commemorates was that of Latin America’s cry for independence. It was a cry which arose from being conscious of a lack of freedom, of exploitation and despoliation, of being '.subject to the passing whims of the powers that be.'”
Evangelizing is a challenge, the Pope said, especially in a world dominated by division and confrontation.
"But is it precisely this troubled world into which Jesus sends us. We must not respond with nonchalance”
The Pope continued by saying that evangelization is the remedy for war, struggle, and division, and a vehicle to obtain peace and unity.
The Pope said that evangelization is not about creating unity to eliminate differences, but instead to realize the wealth that diversity brings.
"That is evangelizing. That is our revolution, because our faith is always revolutionary, that is our most profound and constant cry.”
About one million people participated in the ceremony. Their excitement did not let up and Pope Francis was equally as enthusiastic. Applause, cheers and music dominated the event.