“Let us not give apathy and resignation the power to drive us into a cheerless and banal existence,” Francis said, criticizing “the tyranny of needs” of consumerism, according to The Associated Press.
During his homily delivered in St. Peter’s Basilica, the pope also called upon people to move past “barriers of habit, beyond banal consumerism, beyond a drab and dreary faith, beyond the fear of becoming involved and serving others and the common good.”
“We find ourselves living in communities that crave everything, have everything, yet all too often feel nothing but emptiness in their hearts,” he added.
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, who is the spiritual leader for Orthodox Christians, also had an Epiphany Mass in Istanbul followed by a traditional Blessing of the Waters ceremony, the AP reported.
Some Epiphany celebrations elsewhere in the world were changed as a result of the rapid spread of the omicron variant.
Events in Greece were canceled or scaled back while Spain limited attendance at its ceremony. Others in Bulgaria, however, neglected restrictions on large gatherings, as people jumped into cold rivers and lakes as part of centuries-old traditions, the wire service added.