In his prayer intention for the month of November Pope Francis expresses his closeness to all those who are feeling overwhelmed in their daily life, above all those suffering from stress and depression, and he asks us to pray that they receive the help they need.
The Holy Father calls our attention to the stress and depression affecting many people. Aware that people around the world are going through times of mental, emotional, and affective exhaustion (in varying forms and degrees), the Pope asks that they be adequately accompanied, that we pray for them, and that Jesus’ closeness not be forgotten.
The message of Pope Francis’ prayer intention addresses a central issue in the lives of millions of people: mental health. In the video, he explains that in many cases, “sadness, apathy, and spiritual tiredness end up dominating people’s lives, which are overloaded due to the rhythm of life today.”
Mental health in times of COVID-19
The worldwide COVID-19 pandemic has caused the death of millions of people. It has also tried the mental and emotional resilience of countless people and has affected their psychological equilibrium. Sometimes, this has created situations of real anguish and despair. With this reality in view, the Holy Father asks that we “be close to those who are exhausted, to those who are desperate, without hope. Often, we should simply listen in silence.”
Text of Pope Francis Message: Overwork and work-related stress cause many people to experience extreme exhaustion — mental, emotional, affective, and physical exhaustion. Sadness, apathy, and spiritual tiredness end up dominating people’s lives, who are overloaded due to the rhythm of life today.
Let us try to be close to those who are exhausted, to those who are desperate, without hope. Often, we should just simply listen in silence, because we cannot go and tell someone, “No, life’s not like that. Listen to me, I’ll give you the solution.” There’s no solution. And besides, let us not forget that, along with the indispensable psychological counseling, which is useful and effective, Jesus’ words also help. It comes to my mind and heart: “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”
Let us pray that people who suffer from depression or burn-out will find support and a light that opens them up to life. Pope Francis – November 2021