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The Pope's 7 most tender messages to grandparents

2015-07-27

During this year's feast of Jesus's grandparents, Saints Joachim and Anne, the Pope asked for a round of applause for grandparents.

1. GRATITUDE

POPE FRANCIS 
July 26, 2015
"I want to greet all the grandmothers and grandfathers to thank them for their special place in families and for their importance to the new generations.”

From the beginning, Pope Francis has been very mindful of the elderly. During the Mass at the start of his pontificate he asked for people to care for the elderly in particular since they are often pushed to the "margins of the heart.”

A few months afterward, at World Youth Day in Brazil, he spoke to young people about the importance of listening to their elders. 

2. CULTURAL EUTHANASIA

POPE FRANCIS
July 25, 2013
"This global civilization has gone too far, too far ... because such is the cult that has been built around the god of money that we are witnessing the development of a philosophy and a practice of excluding the two extremes of life that are the hopes of every community. The elderly aren't shown care because no one cares for them. But there is also a cultural euthanasia. No one lets them speak or act.”

Pope Francis knows that grandparents play an essential role in the lives of children. And he knows this by experience thanks to the love of his grandmother Rosa. This is how he explained it in a catechesis dedicated to grandparents.

3. EXAMPLE

POPE FRANCIS
March 11, 2015
"The words of grandparents contain something special for young people. And they know it. The words that my grandmother gave me in writing the day of my priestly ordination I still carry with me, always, in the breviary. And I read them often and they do me good.”

This is why he never tires of denouncing the abuses committed against the elderly, who are marginalized in society. He even says that this is a sin. 

4. MARGINALIZATION

POPE FRANCIS 
March 4, 2015
"It's horrible to see the elderly tossed aside. It's ugly and it's a sin.”

The elderly are of particular importance in the Pope's eyes as the collective memory of communities, and, above all, of families. 

5. TRANSMITTERS OF THE FAITH

POPE FRANCIS
November 11, 2013
"We pray for our grandfathers, our grandmothers, who so often play a heroic role in the transmission of the faith in times of persecution. When mom and dad weren't home or when they had strange ideas, which the politics of the time taught them, it was the grandmothers who passed on the faith.”

In fact, the Pope thinks that the elderly are so important that he was the first to organize an event in the Vatican dedicated to them. It was a very special day, and with a very rare appearance by Benedict XVI, whom Pope Francis tenderly called a 'wise grandfather.'

6. WISDOM

POPE FRANCIS
September 28, 2014
"I have said many times that I enjoy living here, in the Vatican, because it's like having a wise grandfather at home. Thank you.”

The Pope lamented the forgetting of and the violence towards the elderly and he explained that the experience of grandparents is irreplaceable. 

7. TENDERNESS

POPE FRANCIS 
September 28, 2014
"One of the most beautiful things in life, in the family, in our lives, is caressing a child and letting yourself be caressed by a grandfather or a grandmother.”

The Pope backs up his words with deeds. In general audiences, meetings, and trips, Pope Francis never misses an opportunity to greet the elderly or to listen to them.

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