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Rome Reports

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Pope wants to fight the plague of "cold hearts" during Lent

Pope Francis has proposed fighting the plague of "cold hearts" throughout Lent, which begins February 14.

The Vatican has presented the message the pope wrote for the occasion, in which he issues a warning: the 21st century Catholic must beware of vanity and being seduced by transient things that do not lead to happiness.

CARD. PETER TURKSON
Prefect, Dicastery for Integral Development

"This is the content of the pope's message: pay attention to the obstacles that block our response to the call, to the invitation to love."

Throughout the 40 days the Church dedicates to preparing for Holy Week, Christians usually participate more intensely in prayer, almsgiving and fasting. 

The pope has suggested rediscovering these cornerstones of Christianity, because they help prevent this disease: closing oneself in a selfish way. Pope Francis says this attitude ends up rejecting various people that some view as “obstacles:” from unborn children, to the foreigner or neighbor who does not meet predisposed expectations.

In the message, the pope also mentioned the campaign "24 Hours for the Lord," on March 9 and 10. It is an initiative which reinforces another central point of this liturgical time: confession.