01/30/2014, 00.00
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Pope says its “absurd to love Christ without the Church, to listen to Christ but not the Church, to be with Christ at the margins of the Church"

Pope says its “absurd to love Christ without the Church, to listen to Christ but not the Church, to be with Christ at the margins of the Church"

Vatican City ( AsiaNews) - "It's absurd to love Christ without the Church, to listen to Christ but not the Church" , because the "first fruit of Baptism is to make you belong to the Church" and that "membership " has three pillars : humility , faithfulness and prayer for the Church.  This is what Pope Francis said today during his homily at Mass celebrated at Casa Santa Marta.

The Pope, Vatican Radio reports, was speaking about King David, as presented by the readings of the day: a man who speaks with the Lord as a son speaks with his father and even if his requests meet with a "no", he accepts this with joy. David had "a strong feeling of belonging to the people of God." And this makes us wonder about our sense of belonging to the Church, our feeling with the Church and in the Church.

"The Christian is not a baptized who receives baptism and then goes on his way. The first fruit of Baptism is to make you belong to the Church, the People of God. You cannot understand a Christian without the Church. This is why the great Paul VI said that it is an absurd dichotomy to love Christ without the Church, to listen to Christ but not the Church, to be with Christ at the margins of the Church. It's not possible. It is an absurd dichotomy. We receive the Gospel message in the Church and we carry out our holiness in the Church, our path in the Church. The other is a fantasy, or, as he said, an absurd dichotomy".

The "sensus ecclesiae" is "precisely to feel, think, want, within the Church". There are " three pillars of this belonging, this feeling with the Church . The first is humility" in the awareness of the great grace of being "inserted in a community":

"A person who is not humble, can not hear the Church, they can only hear what they like. We see this humility in David, ' Who am I , O Lord God , and what is my home?'. That realization that the story of salvation did not begin with me and will not end with me when I die. No, it's a whole history of salvation : I come, the Lord will take you, will help go onwards and then calls you and the story continues. The history of the Church began before us and will continue after us. Humility: we are a small part of a great people, that walks the path of the Lord".

The second pillar is fidelity, "that is linked to obedience". "Fidelity to the Church, fidelity to its teaching; fidelity to the Creed; fidelity to the doctrine, safeguarding this doctrine. Humility and fidelity. Even Paul VI reminded us that we receive the message of the Gospel as a gift and we need to transmit it as a gift, but not as a something of ours: it is a gift that we received. And be faithful in this transmission . Because we have received and we have to gift a Gospel that is not ours, that is Jesus', and we must not - he would say - become masters of the Gospel, masters of the doctrine we have received, to use it as we please".
 
The third pillar is a special service "to pray for the Church." "How is our prayer for the Church? Do we pray for the Church? Every day at Mass, but at home? When do we say our prayers?".  "Do we pray for the entire Church, all over the world?". May the Lord - the Pope concluded - help us to go down this path to deepen our belonging to the Church and our feeling with the Church".

 

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