VATICAN CITY -- The Easter season, which lasts until Pentecost, is a time for rejoicing and for always seeking out the risen Christ, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY -- People should fast from gossiping and spreading hearsay as part of their Lenten journey, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY -- Christians must never engage in dialogue with the devil, but instead must fight against temptations with the same spiritual weapons Jesus used in the desert, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY -- When a person senses God's call, it can be intimidating or frightening, Pope Francis said, but Christians can be sure that the call flows from God's love and that responding to the call will be a means of sharing God's love.

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VATICAN CITY -- Christians are called to lead and lift people up by being close to them and sharing God's love, not by judging them, Pope Francis said.

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By taking on the frail human condition, God showed his love for humanity and his desire to share in people's joys and sufferings, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY -- People sometimes forget life's ultimate purpose is to prepare for the kingdom of heaven, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY -- The Eight Beatitudes describe the path to holiness, but the call to meekness seems particularly challenging today, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY -- The mission of the church and of all Christians is to proclaim and live the Gospel in daily life, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis called for the use of dialogue -- not weapons -- for resolving the problems and conflict escalating in the Caucasus region.

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VATICAN CITY -- If the church fails to go out and proclaim the Gospel to those who are lost or forgotten, it risks falling ill to the evil that is committed by its own members, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY -- If people took seriously the Gospel call to forgive one another, the world would be a much better place, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY -- Gossip is "a plague worse than COVID," Pope Francis said, asserting that while speaking ill of others comes almost naturally, it is a tool of the devil to divide the church.

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VATICAN CITY -- Christ's cross is a powerful symbol of God's love for humanity and not just a decoration or trinket, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY -- The central focus of a Christian's life and all he or she does to help others must be Jesus Christ, Pope Francis said.

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