Pope Francis' advice for difficult times: humor brings you closer to God

Roxana Anton

We are facing many issues nowadays, with the Covid-19 crisis, inflation, higher prices, even the menace of a World War between Russia and Nato.

We need help to go through all this and preserve sanity, and the Church could be a great support, with its many teachings and wisdom.

A lighter vision of life

Several times in His speeches, Pope Francis preaches adopting a lighter vision of life, and ourselves.

"We do not become just through our effort, for it is Christ, with his grace, who makes us just.”

- Pope Francis

In other words, we must not be so harsh on ourselves, blame ourselves for everything, and think that the responsibility for everything is only ours. We should allow God to play His part, let Him support us, and help us.

This is great wisdom, for those who can understand it.

The sense of humor

Another interesting teaching, "out of ordinary", we might say, is about making space for humor.

"The sense of humor is that grace that I pray to have every day. I pray that beautiful prayer of San Thomas More: Lord, give me a sense of humor. The sense of humor lifts you, makes you see life's temporary dimension, helps you take everything in the spirit of a redeemed soul. It is a human attitude, but closer to the grace of God."

- Pope Francis

Constant prayer is a must, according to the pope, and being a saint is, most of all, having joy, living with joy.

"Gaudete et exsultate," says the Holy Father Francis.

Joy, even a sense of humor, must be part of our lives if we want to be closer to God.

There are many saints ready to have irony, humor, and live with joy, more important than to be austere.

Saint Tommaso Moro (Thomas More) has even written a prayer celebrating humor and the Christian laughing.

Portrait of Sir Thomas More, 1527, by Hans HolbeinHans Holbein (German, 1497/98-1543)/ Creative Commons Attribution

"The purpose is to be grateful, positive, not too complicated, have a flexible spirit, learn how to be self-sufficient, with a smile, and some good laughs too".

-San Vincenzo de Paoli

God is joy, after all, let's not forget. And His Holy Father is right, there's nothing wrong with a good, measured joke and sense of humor.

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