Pursuing the path of pleasure and power does not lead to happiness, Pope Francis said.

"It is a road that at first sight seems pleasurable, but which does not satiate the heart. It is not in this way that one 'has life,'" the pope said April 7 before leading the midday recitation of the "Regina Caeli" prayer.

Greeting some 15,000 visitors in St. Peter's Square, the pope said, "We all want to have life, but there are various ways of having it."

For example, he said, "there are those who reduce existence to a frenetic race to enjoy and possess many things: to eat and drink, to enjoy themselves, to accumulate money and objects, to feel strong and new emotions, and so on."

At first, these pursuits seem to bring great pleasure, he said. However, "many aspects of existence remain unanswered, such as love (and) the inevitable experiences of pain, of limitations and of death. And then the dream we all have in common remains unfulfilled: the hope of living forever, of being loved without limit."

The fullness of life, "to which every one of us is called, is realized in Jesus: it is he who gives us this fullness of life," the pope said.

With Jesus, life always wins, and death and sin are defeated, he said. His gift of his Spirit gives his disciples new life, "imbued with joy, love and hope."

Pope Francis asked the faithful to ask themselves: "Do I believe in the power of the resurrection of Jesus; do I believe that Jesus is risen?" and "Do I let myself be prompted by him to love my brothers and sisters, and to hope every day?"

The way to "have life" every day, he said, is to "fix one's eyes on the crucified and risen Jesus, encountering him in the sacraments and in prayer, recognizing that he is present, believing in him, letting oneself be touched by his grace and guided by his example, experiencing the joy of loving like him."