This is Pope Francis’ Prayer Intention for July 2023

Daniel Ibáñez/CNA

“If you are the same at the end of Mass as you were at the beginning, something is wrong,” the pope said in a video shared by the Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network on July 3.

“Let us pray that Catholics place at the center of their lives the eucharistic celebration,” he said, “which transforms human relationships and opens up an encounter with God and their brothers and sisters.”

The pope’s prayer video, released monthly, includes images of the Mass, especially the moment of the elevation of the Eucharist during transubstantiation — or the moment the bread becomes Christ’s body.

There are also video clips of people encountering and helping others: a man greets a homeless man on the street, a woman brings groceries to an elderly woman, and a eucharistic minister brings Communion to a homebound man.

“Each time we participate in the Eucharist,” Pope Francis said, “Jesus comes, and Jesus gives us the strength to love like he loved, because it gives us the courage to encounter others, to go out of ourselves, and to open ourselves to others with love.”


“In the Eucharist, it is Christ who offers himself, who gives himself for us. He invites us, so that our lives may be nourished by him and may nourish the lives of our brothers and sisters,” he said.

“The eucharistic celebration is an encounter with the risen Jesus. At the same time, it is a way of opening ourselves to the world as he taught us.”

Hannah Brockhaus is Catholic News Agency's senior Rome correspondent. She grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, and has a degree in English from Truman State University in Missouri.