» 02/24/2014, 00.00
Pope: "An absurdity to love Christ without the Church, to feel Christ but not the Church"
Jesus "always forgives" and "always makes sure we get safely home. He never leaves us alone along the way". "Our following Christ, is not an idea. It is a constant abiding at home – and though each of us has the opportunity and the real experience of leaving home for a sin, a mistake - God knows - salvation is going home with Jesus in the Church”.
The Vatican City ( AsiaNews) - It
is "absurdity to love Christ without the Church, to feel Christ but not the
Francis reiterated during the mass celebrated at Casa Santa Marta, pointing out
that following Jesus is not an "idea " but a "constant abiding at
home", the Church , where Christ always welcomes everyone, even if they are distant.
Vatican Radio reports that the
Pope took his cue from the Gospel of the boy seized by convulsions, foaming at
the mouth, in a middle of a shocked and helpless crowd. And
his worried father emerges from the crowd and decides to hope against hope in
Jesus. Jesus, moved with compassion by the crystalline faith of the father,
drives away the demon and then leans gently over the young man, who appears as
if dead, helping him to his feet.
"All the [noise and excitement created by the crowd gathered round the
disciples, who had failed to liberate the boy], all the talk, ends in an act:
Jesus lowers Himself [and] takes up the boy. These acts of Jesus make us think.
When He heals, when He goes among the crowds and heals a person, He never
leaves that person alone. He is not a wizard, a sorcerer, a "healer" who goes
and [plies his trade] and is on his way: everyone [he helps], he helps to
return to his proper place - He leaves no one on the side of the road. These
acts of Jesus are very beautiful, indeed".
Pope Francis went on to explain that such gestures are found throughout the
Gospels: from the resurrection of Lazarus; to the raising of the daughter of
Jairus or of the widow's son - as well as the lost sheep returned to the fold
or the lost coin recovered by the woman. "Jesus," said Pope Francis, "always
makes sure we get safely home. He never leaves us alone along the way".
"Because Jesus did not only come from Heaven. He is the Son of a People. Jesus
is the promise made to that People, which, beginning with Abraham, made its way
toward the promise. These gestures of Jesus teach us that every healing, every
[act of] pardon, always helps us return to our People, which is the
Jesus always forgives, and his acts [of forgiveness] become "revolutionary" or
"inexplicable" when they reach those who [seem to us to be too far gone], like
Matthew the tax collector or his colleague, Zacchaeus. Christ's healing acts
always lead people "home" - and thus it is impossible to understand Jesus
without the People of God. "It is," he said, "an absurdity to love Christ
without the Church, to feel Christ but not the Church, to follow Christ from
the outskirts of the Church." "Christ and the Church are united," he said.
"Whenever Christ calls a person, He brings that person to the Church." For
this, said Pope Francis, "it is good [that a child] "come to be baptized in
Church - Mother Church".
"And these, Jesus' gestures of so much tenderness make us realize this: that
our doctrine, let us say, or our following Christ, is not an idea. It is a
constant abiding at home - and though each of us has the opportunity and the
real experience of leaving home for a sin, a mistake - God knows - salvation
[means] going home with Jesus in the Church. These are gestures of tenderness.
One by one, the Lord is calling us as well, to His people, into His family, our
mother, the Holy Church. Let us think on these acts of Jesus".
Pope: God's mercy is "a great light of love", it is "the way that God forgives "
In the Gospel story of the adulteress, Jesus "defends the sinner from her enemies, he defend the sinner from a just charge". The Lord forgives "with a caress, caressing our wounds of sin. Because He is involved in forgiveness, He is involved in our salvation."
Pope: war leaves children starving in refugee camps as lords of war who make and sell weapons throw parties
"Wars, hatred, enmity - he replied - can not be bought at the market: they are here in our hearts". "This spirit of war, which leads us away from God, is not only far from us" it is "also in our homes”. "How many families are destroyed because the father, the mother is unable to find the path of peace and prefer war".
Pope: "a faith that does not lead to witness, is not faith. It is words, nothing more than words”.
"Even demons. Demons know what is said in the Creed very well and they know that it is the Truth". "Do you believe in one God? You do well! But the demons do too and they tremble". The difference is that the demons "have no faith" because "faith is not having knowledge" but rather "receiving the message of God" brought by Christ.
Pope: a nation that does not respect the elderly, has no future, because it has no memory
"We pray for our grandfathers, our grandmothers, who often have had a heroic role in the transmission of the faith in times of persecution . When mom and dad were not at home and even had strange ideas, that the politics of the time taught, grandparents were the ones who passed on the faith. "
Pope: Mercy, asking ourselves "who am I to judge?" brings peace to hearts, among people, to world
"To be merciful, we need two attitudes. The first is self-knowledge" the awareness that "we have done so many bad things, that we too are sinners”. And before our repentance, "the righteousness of God ... is transformed into mercy and forgiveness”.
Defeated on ice, but 'first' in history, joint Korean hockey team players hug
After losing to Sweden in their last match, the Korean team ends up in seventh place. Players burst into tears at their imminent separation. "Politicians made that executive decision [to have a joint team]. Our players and staff are the ones that made it work,” said the team’s proud Canadian coach. One South Korean athlete hopes the country is proud of them. "It was bigger than hockey."
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