Reflecting on this week’s Gospel before the Angelus on Sunday, Holy Father Pope Francis said that Jesus sees us with the eyes of the heart, becoming the model of love and service. St Mark’s Gospel describes the Apostles returning from their first mission, an experience that “must have been exciting, but tiring too”, said Holy Father Pope Francis. Which is why Jesus tells them to: “Come away to some lonely place all by yourselves and rest for a while”. Unfortunately, the crowd gets there before the disciples and Jesus arrive.

As reported by Vatican news, Holy Father Pope Francis remarked that “Sometimes we fail to realize our projects, because an unexpected emergency occurs that messes up our programs and requires us to be flexible and available to the needs of others.” That is when we are called to imitate what Jesus did: “As He stepped ashore He saw a large crowd and had pity on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd, and He set Himself to teach them at some length” (Mk 6:34).” His Holiness Pope Francis isolated the three verbs used by St Mark to describe this scene, one the Pope compared to “photographing the eyes of the Divine Master”. The verbs are: “to see, to have pity, to teach. We can call them the verbs of the Shepherd”, he added. “Jesus’ gaze is not a neutral or, worse, cold and detached look, because Jesus always looks with the eyes of the heart”, continued the Pontiff. “His heart is so tender and full of compassion, that He knows how to grasp even the most hidden needs of people”.

His Holiness Pope Francis concluded his remarks by highlighting that “Jesus has made Himself a gift for others thus becoming a model of love and service for each one of us”.