Vatican City ( AsiaNews) - "If we Christians believe professing the faith, even safeguarding it, if we are custodians of the faith , and entrust ourselves to God , the Lord , we will be victorious Christians. And this is the victory that has overcome the world: our faith". Otherwise we would be "half hearted Christians" those "defeated Christians" of which the Church "is full", said Pope Francis during his homily at Mass this morning at Casa Santa Marta.
Vatican Radio reports the Pope's homily focused on the passage from the First Letter of St. John, in which the apostle , "insists " on "that word which for him is as an expression of Christian life" , " remaining in the Lord" to love God and to love our neighbor . This "remaining in love" of God is the work of the Holy Spirit and our faith and has a concrete effect:
"Whoever remains in God, whoever is begotten by God, whoever remains in love wins the world and the victory is our faith. For our part, faith. For God - for this 'remaining' - the Holy Spirit, which carries out this work of grace. For our part, faith. This is really something! And this is the victory that has won over the world: our faith ! Our faith can do anything! This is victory! And it would be good if we repeated this, even just to ourselves, because we are so often defeated Christians. The Church is full of defeated Christians who do not believe in this, that faith is the victory, who do not live this faith, because if you do not live this faith, then there is only defeat and the prince of the world wins over the world".
The Pope recalled that Jesus praised the very faith of the Woman, the Canaanite, the man born blind and said that those who have faith, like a mustard seed can move mountains . "This faith - he says - requires two attitudes of us: to profess and entrust ourselves". First of all "profess".
"Faith is to profess God, but the God who has revealed Himself to us, from the days of our fathers until now, the God of history. And this is what we recite every day in the Creed. It is one thing to recite the Creed from the heart and another like parrots, no? I believe, I believe in God, I believe in Jesus Christ, I believe ... do I believe in what I say ? Is this profession of faith true or am I reciting it off by heart, because I have to? Or do I only half believe in it? Professing the Faith! All of it, not just a part of it! All of it! And safeguarding the faith in its entirety, as it came to us, on the road of tradition: all of the faith ! And ' how do I know if I profess the faith well? There is a sign: those who profess the faith well, all of the faith, are able to worship, worship God".
"We know how to ask God how to thank God - the Pope said - but to worship God, to praise God is something more! Only those who have this strong faith are capable of worship". And Pope Francis added: "I dare say that the thermometer of the life of the Church is a bit ' low in this: the capacity to worship is somewhat scarce, "we do not have a lot , some , yes ... " . And this "is because we are not convinced or only half convinced in the profession of our faith". So - said the Pope - the first attitude is to profess the faith and safeguard it . The other attitude is "entrusting ourselves".
"The man or woman who has faith entrust themselves to God: they entrust themselves! Paul, in a dark time in his life, said: 'I know well to whom I have entrusted myself'. To God! The Lord Jesus! Entrusting ourselves and this leads us to hope. Just as the profession of faith leads us to the worship and praise of God, trust in God leads us to an attitude of hope. There are many Christians who have a watered down hope, not a very strong one: a faint hope . Why? Because they do not have the strength or the courage to trust in the Lord . But if we Christians believe professing the faith, even safeguarding it, if we are custodians of the faith , and entrust ourselves to God , the Lord , we will be victorious Christians. And this is the victory that has overcome the world: our faith. "