Vatican City (AsiaNews) - "We must learn to listen more to our conscience. Be
careful however, this does not mean we must follow our ego, do whatever interests
us, whatever suits us, whatever pleases us . . .," Pope Francis told the tens
of thousands of pilgrims gathered in St Peter's Square for the Angelus.
The pontiff was inspired by today's Gospel (Luke, 9:51-62), which shows Jesus taking the "steadfast
decision to journey to Jerusalem" in order "to complete his mission
"From that moment," the pontiff added, "after the steadfast decision,
Jesus goes straight to the finish. Even to the people he meets who ask him if they
can follow him, he clearly says what the conditions are: not having a permanent
abode; detaching themselves from human affections, [and] not giving in to
nostalgia for the past."
"But Jesus also said to his disciples, charged with preceding him in
his journey to Jerusalem to announce His coming, not to impose anything. If they
do not find people willing to host him, they should proceed further, move on."
Speaking ad-lib, the pontiff added, "Jesus is
humble; he never imposes. If you want, follow him; He never imposes. "
"All this makes us think. It tells us, for example, the importance
that, even for Jesus, conscience had: listening in one's heart to the Father's voice
and follow it. Jesus, in his earthly life, was not, so
to speak, "remote-controlled". He was the Word made flesh, the Son of
God made man, and at one point took a steadfast decision to go up to Jerusalem
for the last time; a decision taken in good conscience, not on His own but
together with the Father, in full union with Him! He decided in obedience to the Father, deeply
attuned and intimately listening to his will. For this reason, the decision was
steadfast for it was taken together with the Father. And in the Father, Jesus
found the strength and the
light for his journey."
"And Jesus," the pope said again ad-lib, "was free. In his dialogue
with the Father, he was free. Jesus does not want Christians who are not free,
who do not speak with God or are 'remote controlled'. If a Christian does not know
how to speak with God, he is not free".
we also must learn to listen more to our conscience. Be careful however, this does
not mean we ought to follow our ego, do whatever interests us, whatever suits
us, whatever pleases us. That is not conscience. Conscience is the inner space
in which we can listen to and hear the truth, the good, God's voice. It is the
inner place of our relationship with Him, who speaks to our heart and helps us discern,
understand the path we ought to take, and once the decision is made, move
forward, and remain faithful."
As an example of obedience to God and conscience, Francis Pope cited a
special witness, "a wonderful example," Pope Benedict XVI, whose
name, when the pontiff mentioned it, elicited a long round of applause.
Benedict XVI," Francis noted, "has given us a great example in this respect.
When the Lord made it clear, in prayer, what was the step he had to take, he
followed, with a great sense of discernment and courage, his conscience, that
is, the will of God that spoke to his heart-and this example of our father does
much good to all of us, as an example to follow."
Lady," he said in conclusion, "with great simplicity, listened to and meditated
deep within herself upon the Word of God and what was happening to Jesus. She
followed her son deep conviction with steadfast hope. May Mary help us become
more and more men and women of conscience-free in our conscience, because it is
in conscience that the dialogue with God is given-men and women able to hear
the voice of God and follow it with decision."
After the Angelus, Francis noted that today the world is celebrating the 'Day
for the charity of the Pope' in which offerings are collected for the of the
pope's pastoral work. The
pope thanked bishops and parishes, "especially the poorest ones, for
the prayers and offerings that support the many pastoral initiatives and
charitable activities of the Successor of Peter in every part of the world. Thank you all!"