05/23/2013VATICAN Pope: bishops should not be career-oriented, interested in money or compromises with the spirit of the world Celebrating the Liturgy of the Word with Italian Bishops, Francis outlines how the pastors of souls ought to be. They must be men capable of "listening to the silent stories of those who suffer, and help those who are afraid of not making it." We must also lift, reassure and inspire hope by leading our "life in accordance with God's plan, and fully commit ourselves to the Lord Jesus. From this, comes the discernment that recognises and takes on the thoughts, expectations, and needs of the people of our times." Vatican City (AsiaNews) - For Pope Francis "to be a
pastor means believing every day in the grace and power that comes from the
Lord," despite our weakness. It also means being "vigilant" about oneself
and the flock, because "the lack of vigilance," as we know, "makes the...
05/20/2013VATICAN Pope: courageous “open-hearted prayer"," enables Jesus to perform miracles During Mass this morning Francis says that we must overcome that "piece of disbelief" that is in all of us. "Prayer to ask for a miracle, ask for an extraordinary action must be an involved prayer, which unites us all." An episode in Argentina demonstrates that at times we must also “struggle” in our prayer.
05/19/2013VATICAN Pope to Movements: The action of the Spirit is newness, harmony, mission At Mass for Pentecost, along with movements and lay associations, Francis asks believers not close in on themselves for fear the 'God’s surprises', defending ourselves " barricaded in transient structures which have lost their capacity for openness." The harmony of the Spirit brings unity, not exclusivism or standardization. "The Holy Spirit ... saves us from the threat of a Church which is gnostic and self-referential, closed in on herself" and " drive us to the very outskirts of existence in order to proclaim life in Jesus Christ." The final thanks of the Pope: "You are a gift and a treasure for the Church."
05/19/2013VATICAN Pope to Movements: man is in crisis. No to a church closed in on itself, but a Church that goes out, At the Vigil for Pentecost, Pope Francis pushes Christian witness in a world that has become the enemy of man, where the collapse of financial markets makes the news, but not the death of workers or child hunger. A great event for the Year of Faith, 200 thousand people are present: from CL and Renewal in the Spirit, to the Neocatechumenal Way, Focolare, Sant'Egidio, international associations. The testimony of John Waters, an Irish journalist, and Paul Bhatti, former minister for minorities in Pakistan. The Pope invites all to pray every day for persecuted Christians and to work for religious freedom. The Church is not an efficient NGO. Her main contribution is "to live the Gospel."
05/17/2013VATICAN The life of the Church and of the Churches is the mission, pope says In meeting the national directors of the Pontifical Mission Societies, Francis focuses on the duty to bring the Gospel to the world, which includes "educating every Christian, from childhood, to have a genuinely universal and missionary spirit," and giving "special attention to the young Churches, which often operate in a climate of difficulty, discrimination, and persecution, so that they might be sustained and assisted in witnessing the Gospel in word and in deed."
05/16/2013VATICAN Pope: Church does not need lukewarm, "backseat" Christians In this morning's Mass, Francis spoke about Saint Paul's apostolic zeal. "Paul is a nuisance. He is a man who, with his preaching, his work, his attitude irritates others, because he bears witness to Jesus Christ". We can ask the Holy Spirit "to give us all this apostolic fervour to be nuisance in the Church's comfort zones and the grace to reach the outer edges of existence."
05/16/2013VATICAN Pope: Money must serve and not rule Addressing a group of ambassadors, Francis criticizes the role that economics and finance have on people and society today, reducing humanity to being consumers and consumer goods. The rejection of God and ethics "considered counterproductive as too human, because it relativizes money and power, as a threat, because it rejects the manipulation and submission of the person."
05/15/2013VATICAN Pope: Pray for priests and bishops so they do not yield to temptation of money and careerism During Mass celebrated this morning, Francis comments on the phrase of St. Paul that exhorts the "elders" of the Church of Ephesus to be vigilant of themselves and their flock, shepherds attentive to the "ravenous wolves." "When a priest, a bishop goes after money, the people do not love him and that's a sign. But he ends up badly." "And when a bishop, a priest travels the road of vanity, enters into the spirit of careerism - which hurts the Church so much – he ends up being ridiculous, he boasts, he likes to be seen, all powerful ... And the people did not love that. "
05/15/2013VATICAN Pope: you cannot be a “part-time” Christian, "at certain moments, circumstances, choices" At the general audience Francis talks about the truth that the Holy Spirit helps us to get know and that "always and totally involves our daily lives." In an era marked by relativism, Jesus is the answer to the question: is there "the" truth? "The truth does not grab you like an object, the truth is encountered. It is not a possession, it is an encounter with a Person." In his greetings in Italian he announces his desire to visit, Cagliari, Sardinia, "probably in September”, and in particular the shrine of Our Lady of Bonaria, connected to the founding of Buenos Aires.