Papal Mass: Turn Mexico into a land of opportunity
Money, fame and power. Pope Francis said these are the three main temptations that destroy the human spirit. It was part of his homily as he celebrated Mass in a Mexico City suburb, near the Study Center of Ecatepec.
The Pope made his way to the neighborhood in a helicopter. Then for about six miles, he greeted the crowds in the popemobile, as thousands of people cheered on.
Reflecting on the day's Gospel readings, the Pope talked about the devil by highlighting two points.
He said the devil wants to separate mankind from God through three ills that are self destructive: selfishness, vanity and pride. He then added that these temptations should be rejected clearly and without fear.
"We have chosen Jesus and not the devil. If we reference what we just heard in the Gospel, Jesus doesn't respond to the devil with His own words. Rather, He answers by saying the words of God. The Word of the Gospel. Because brothers and sisters, let's get one thing clear, one cannot have a conversation with the devil. We can't do this, because the devil will always win. Only the power of the Word of God can defeat the devil.â?
Once the Mass ended, Pope Francis prayed the Angelus, offering a message of hope even amid the poverty and violence the suburb of Ecatepec faces. It's estimated that between 2012 and 2015, roughly 600 women were murdered there.
"I invite you once again today to be on the front line, to be first in all the initiatives which help make this blessed land of Mexico a land of opportunities, where there will be no need to emigrate in order to dream, no need to be exploited in order to work, no need to make the despair and poverty of many the opportunism of a few, a land that will not have to mourn men and women, young people and children who are destroyed at the hands of the dealers of death. This land is filled with the perfume of la Guadalupana who has always gone before us in love.â?
The enthusiasm of the crowd was quite evident throughout the Mass. An estimated 250,000 people took part in the papal ceremony.