(ANSA) - Vatican City, October 17 - Churches must find ways
to expand their opening hours to allow better access - both
physical and spiritual, Pope Francis said Thursday.
"When we go on the street and find ourselves in front of a
closed church, it feels strange," the pope said in a homily
during Mass at St. Martha's House, the guesthouse in the Vatican
where Francis lives.
Church authorities may have reasons for the closures, "but
the reality is that the church is closed and the people passing
in front cannot enter," he said.
The closure has a powerful effect, making people feel shut
out in every sense, he added.
And worse, said the pope, "the Lord who is inside cannot
get out" to reach the faithful.