Vatican City, 24 November 2013 (VIS) – This morning the Holy Father received in audience the Year of Faith volunteers in the Sala Clementina of the Vatican Apostolic Palace. “In this time of grace”, he said, “we have been able to rediscover the essential nature of the Christian path, in which faith, along with charity, occupies the primary position”.

“Indeed, faith is fundamental to Christian experience”, he continued, “as it motivates the decisions and acts of our daily life. It is the boundless source of all our actions, within the family, at work, in the parish, with our friends, and in various social contexts. And this firm, genuine faith is seen especially in moments of difficulty or trial; Christians then allow God to take them in His arms and to hold them close, sure of entrusting themselves to a love as strong as an indestructible rock. In situations of suffering, if we abandon ourselves humbly to God, we are able to give good witness”.

Pope Francis explained to those present that “there is a need for Christian communities, committed to a courageous apostolate, who reach people in their own environments, even those which are most difficult”. Finally, he mentioned that “there are many people in need of a human gesture, of a smile, a true word, and of testimony through which they are able to perceive the presence of Jesus Christ”, and encouraged the volunteers to continue their work so that “no one lacks this sign of love and tenderness, born of faith”.

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