Pope: the renewal of the Church passes through the renewal of faith
Benedict XVI celebrates concluding Mass of his visit to Germany in Freiburg. "agnostics, who are constantly exercised by the question of God, those who long for a pure heart but suffer on account of our sin, are closer to the Kingdom of God than believers whose life of faith is "routine" and who regard the Church merely as an institution, without letting their hearts be touched by faith. "
Freiburg (AsiaNews) - "The renewal of the Church will only come about through openness to conversion and through renewed faith": in fact, it is not enough to have " social and charitable institutions through which the love of neighbour is practised in ways that bring social benefits and reach to the ends of the earth", the Christian must work there in the love of Jesus, he must be "questioned" by his faith.
There were 100 thousand people in the Freiburg airport, including bishops from all of the nation’s 27 dioceses, where Benedict XVI celebrated the concluding Mass of his trip to Germany. Even today the Pope reiterated the invitation that has marked the entire visit, the need to seek the faith. Because otherwise "agnostics, who are constantly exercised by the question of God, those who long for a pure heart but suffer on account of our sin, are closer to the Kingdom of God than believers whose life of faith is "routine" and who regard the Church merely as an institution, without letting their hearts be touched by faith"
To the cheering crowd, in which there were also people who came from neighbouring countries, Benedict XVI commented on the Bible reading in which "The experience of the Babylonian Exile caused the people to fall into a crisis of faith: Why did this calamity happen? Perhaps God was not truly powerful". "There are theologians - he adds - who, in the face of all the terrible things that happen in the world today, say that God cannot be all-powerful. In response to this we profess God, the all-powerful Creator of heaven and earth. We are glad and thankful that God is all-powerful. At the same time, we have to be aware that he exercises his power differently from the way we normally do. He has placed a limit on his power, by recognizing the freedom of his creatures. We are glad and thankful for the gift of freedom. However, when we see the terrible things that happen as a result of it, we are frightened. Let us put our trust in God, whose power manifests itself above all in mercy and forgiveness. Let us be certain, dear faithful, that God desires the salvation of his people. He desires our salvation. He is always close to us, especially in times of danger and radical change, his heart aches for us and he reaches out to us. We need to open ourselves to him so that the power of his mercy can touch our hearts. We have to be ready to abandon evil, to raise ourselves from indifference and make room for his word. God respects our freedom. He does not constrain us".
This freedom is confirmed in the Gospel parable of the father who asks his two children to go to work in the vineyard, only one of which fulfils the request. Jesus gave us the prime example of this willingness to adapt to God’s will: "In humility and obedience, Jesus fulfilled the will of the Father and by dying on the Cross for his brothers and sisters; he saved us from our pride and obstinacy". We see the same attitude in the 'yes' of Mary, adhering faithfully to the beauty of God's plan and providence". Following this example, the Pope said in the Angelus, God’s love will “take flesh in our lives, becoming ever more tangible. In all our cares we need have no fear. God is good".