The Mass celebrated on September 28th, during the meeting of Pope Francis with Grandparents and the Elderly, was centered on the great theme of a renewed bond between generations. In his homily, the Pope referred explicitly to the passage of the Gospel about Mary’s visit to her elderly cousin Elizabeth, in the sixth month of pregnancy, and indicated it as a path that all can still follow today.
"We can imagine that the Virgin Mary, visiting the home of Elizabeth, would have heard her and her husband Zechariah praying with the words of today’s responsorial psalm: ‘You, O Lord, are my hope, my trust, O Lord, from my youth... Do not cast me off in the time of old age, do not forsake me when my strength is spent... Even to old age and grey hairs, O God, do not forsake me, until I proclaim your might to all the generations to come’ (Ps 71:5,9,18)." The Holy Father stressed the importance of the witness of elderly couple’s faith for Mary, which certainly enriched her young spirit. Elizabeth and Zechariah in fact "were no experts in parenthood; for them too it was the first pregnancy. They were however experts in faith, experts in God, experts in the hope that comes from him: and this is what the world needs in every age. Mary was able to listen to those elderly and amazed parents; she treasured their wisdom, and it proved precious for her in her journey as a woman, as a wife and as a mother."
Then, at the end of the Angelus, after thanking the elderly who had come from all over the world, Pope Francis mentioned the next important event of the Church, the Extraordinary Synod on the Family (October 5th to 19th) and urged everyone to pray for its success as well as for the person who will have the greatest responsibility during the assembly, the Synod’s Secretary General: "Next Sunday we will begin the Synodal Assembly on the theme of family. This is the principal responsibility of Cardinal Baldisseri. Pray for him. I encourage everyone, individuals and communities, to pray for this important event and I entrust this intention to the intercession of Mary, Salus Populi Romani."