Continuing his weekly series of catechetical addresses on Christian hope, Pope Francis devoted his February 1 general audience to “the helmet of hope.”
“Today we turn to the earliest writing of the New Testament, Saint Paul’s First Letter to the Thessalonians,” Pope Francis recalled in his address, which he delivered in Paul VI Audience Hall.“
The Apostle writes to confirm this young Christian community in its faith in Christ’s death and resurrection, but he also speaks of the meaning of this mystery for the life of each believer,” he continued. “For Christ is the first fruits of the future resurrection.”
The Pope added:
Before the mystery of death, and the loss of our loved ones, we Christians are challenged to hope more firmly in the Lord’s promise of eternal life. Paul tells the Thessalonians to wear the hope of salvation like a helmet (1 Thess 5:8), in the knowledge that, because Christ is risen, the object of our hope is certain.
Christian hope, then, is a way of life; we live daily in expectation of the resurrection. In that same hope, and in the communion of the Church, we pray too that those who have gone before us will live for ever in Christ. Let us ask the Lord to strengthen us in the sure expectation that one day we will be united with him, and all our loved ones, in the joy of the resurrection.