22 October, 2014 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile





mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 06/18/2008
VATICAN
Today’s Christians must pray but also dedicate themselves to action, says Pope
In today’s general audience Benedict XVI looks at the figure of Isidore of Seville. He highlights the saint’s encyclopaedic culture and his teaching about the need for the right mediation between the desire for the contemplative life and the duty to dedicate oneself to the service of others.

Vatican City (AsiaNews) – Even today at the start of the third millennium Christians must pray, but they must also act together for the good of their fellow human beings. Prayer is indispensable but not if it disconnected from charity-inspired action in the service of others.

Benedict XVI devoted his thoughts in today’s general audience to Saint Isidore of Seville, a Father of the Church who lived between the 6th and 7th centuries, who even today teaches us about the need for the right mediation between the desire to lead a contemplative life and the duty to devote oneself to the service of others.

To the more than 20,000 people present in St Peter’s Square, the Pope focused on Isidore’s thoughts. “Considered the last Christian Father of Antiquity,” he believed that in imitating Christ, who had an active life and at the same time withdrew to the “mountain” to pray, Christians can “devote themselves to contemplation without denying themselves an active life; behaving differently would not be right. In fact as one loves God through contemplation, one loves one’s fellow human beings through action.”

In looking at Saint Isidore’s life, Benedict XVI said the former was the brother of Bishop Leander, whom he succeeded in 599 AD, who raised him in an environment that befitted the life of a studious monk. The two had a rich library of classical Pagan and Christian texts and he was pushed towards “a very strong discipline in dedicating himself to learning.”

As his books show he was interested in all cultural fields, had an “encyclopaedic knowledge” and literary texts that went from Cicero to Gregory the Great.

In order to understand him better it is necessary to remember the complexity of the political times in which he lived.

In his childhood he “experienced the bitterness of exile,” but “felt the thrill of making a contribution to the preparation of a people that was rediscovering its political and religious unity.”

He had huge problems like his relationship with heretics and Jews, “problems which appear real even today, especially if one thinks about what is happening in some regions in which we seem to witness situations similar to those of 6th century Iberian Peninsula.”

A “man with strong dialectical contrapositions’” he went through the same inner conflict his friend Pope Gregory the Great and Saint Augustine experienced, i.e. a conflict “between the desire for solitude to meditate and the need for charity towards his brothers, whose salvation, he felt, was his charge.”

Men of God, he said, do not want to get involved in secular things and grieve when they are burdened with responsibilities, but they accept what they would like to escape from and avoid if that is God’s will.

“This synthesis of a life that seeks God’s contemplation and dialogue through prayer and the reading of the Holy Scriptures as well as action in the service of the human community is Isidore’s great lesson to us, Christians of today, who are called to bear witness to Christ at the start of the new millennium.”

During the audience, the Holy Father gave “warm greetings” in English to “a group of Holocaust survivors present today.”

PHOTO: Credit CPP


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
05/28/2008 VATICAN
“True hope” comes from the “desire for God,” says Pope
02/27/2008 VATICAN
Pope: Saint Augustine, model of a conversion "that lasts a lifetime"
03/05/2008 VATICAN
Pope: Roman primacy is "necessary" in the Church, today as in the past
08/08/2007 VATICAN
“Without God man loses his greatness,” says Pope
01/30/2008 VATICAN
Pope: Faith and reason must be harmonised, they are not opposed

Editor's choices
IRAQ - ITALY
Almost 700,000 euros raised as the 'Adopt a Christian from Mosul' campaign continues
by Bernardo CervelleraA second instalment is sent with funds raised in September. The fate of East-West relations is being played out in the Middle East and Iraq. Pope Francis and the Synod issue an appeal. Governments are lukewarm. Aid is coming from around the world. A new international community is defeating the "globalisation of indifference."
IRAQ-VATICAN
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul": Archbishops’ thanks as first aid arrives
by Amel NonaMsgr. Amel Nona, the Chaldean Archbishop of Mosul, who is also a refugee himself, thanks all the donors to the AsiaNews campaign. The situation is increasingly difficult given the huge number of refugees and the arrival of winter and snow, making outdoor shelters and tents impossible. The crisis, an occasion that activates the faith of Christians.
ITALY - IRAQ
After raising € 350,000, 'Adopt a Christian from Mosul' campaign continues
by Bernardo CervelleraDonations raised up to 31 August have been sent to the patriarch of Baghdad and the bishops of Kurdistan. The campaign helps to feed, house, clothe, and bring comfort to more than 150,000 Christian, Yazidi, Turkmen, Shia and Sunni refugees who fled the violence of the army of the Islamic Caliphate. People in Italy and around the world have been generous, including the poor and the unemployed, a sign of hope for the world as well as those who suffer and those who give.

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.