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Pope asks people, did you spend 2013 helping others

Vatican City: Pope Francis used his end of year prayer service, on Tuesday evening in the Vatican, to urge people to ask themselves whether they'd spent 2013 on their own interests, or whether they'd spent
India TV News Desk January 01, 2014 8:27 IST
India TV News Desk
Vatican City: Pope Francis used his end of year prayer service, on Tuesday evening in the Vatican, to urge people to ask themselves whether they'd spent 2013 on their own interests, or whether they'd spent it helping others.

That's what we all should consider as New Year's celebrations get under way, the pontiff said as he led the service in St. Peter's Basilica to give thanks, a Vatican year-end tradition.

"Let us courageously ask ourselves: How did we live the time (God) gave us?" Francis asked in his homily. "Did we use it above all for ourselves, for our interests, or did we know how to spend it for others as well?," the Pope said.

Pope Francis also encouraged people to reflect on whether they used 2013 to improve the place where they live.

During his first year as pope, Francis has stressed that he wants the Catholic church to be a 'poor' church, focused on reaching out to those who live on the margins of society and others in need.

Citing Rome as an example, the pope noted that the city is full of tourists, but also full of refugees and people without work.

After the solemn service at Saint Peter's Basilica, Francis put on a long white coat and went out into Saint Peter's Square to admire a life-sized nativity scene and greet well-wishers.

Right after his election as pope in March, the Argentine-born Francis established his style as a down-to-earth pastor who likes to chat, shake hands and hug his flock when in public.