God Is Not Indifferent to Man's Suffering, Pope Says

Reflects on Psalm 141(142) at General Audience

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VATICAN CITY, NOV. 12, 2003 (Zenit.org).- God is man's "supreme hope" and is not indifferent to suffering, says John Paul II.



The Pope made that point today when commenting on Psalm 141(142) in his address to the general audience, which drew some 12,000 pilgrims to St. Peter's Square.

He noted that the Psalm was St. Francis of Assisi's last prayer before he died on the night of Oct. 3, 1226.

The Psalm is a biblical composition that begins with dramatic tones: "With full voice I cry to the Lord; with full voice I beseech the Lord. Before God I pour our my complaint, lay bare my distress."

The one praying is experiencing a "nightmare," the Holy Father explained. "He is alone and abandoned, 'no friend is there.'"

"The only protection and effective company is that of God," he said.

"The Lord now remains the last and sole foundation on which to base oneself, the only possibility of life, the supreme hope," the Pope continued.

From this closeness of God, thanksgiving arises, in which the Christian community should also participate, especially in the liturgy, when the "pain of the individual should find echo in the hearts of all; equally the joy of each should be lived by the entire praying community," the Holy Father added.

Christian tradition has applied this Psalm to Christ, he said. "In this perspective, the luminous goal of the Psalm's supplication is transfigured in a paschal sign, which is based on the glorious outcome of the life of Christ and of our destiny of resurrection with him."