Editorial - Catholic Standard - Guyana 2nd October 2015, by Mike James [email protected]
Homily at final Mass in Philadelphia in which Pope Francis reflected on a Gospel reading that sees the disciples ask Jesus whether they should rebuke others who are healing in his name. Jesus replies: “There is no one who performs a mighty deed in my name who can at the same time speak ill of me.”‘
Love consists in this, not that we have loved God but that he loved us’ first. That love gives us a profound certainty: We are sought by God; he waits for us. It is this confidence that makes disciples encourage, support and nurture the good things happening all around them. To raise doubts about the working of the Spirit, to give the impression that it cannot take place in those who are not ‘part of our group,’ who are not ‘like us,’ is a dangerous temptation. Not only does it block conversion to the faith; it is a perversion of faith!”
Holiness is “tied to little gestures. These little gestures are those we learn at home, in the family; they get lost amid all the other things we do, yet they do make each day different. They are the quiet things done by mothers and grandmothers, by fathers and grandfathers, by children.”
Families . “Love is shown by little things, by attention to small daily signs which make us feel at home. Faith grows when it is lived and shaped by love. That is why our families, our homes, are true domestic churches. They are the right place for faith to become life, and life to become faith.”
Addressing the gathering of more than 200 U.S. bishops.
On Goodness . “Harsh and divisive language does not befit the tongue of a pastor, it has no place in his heart; although it may momentarily seem to win the day, only the enduring allure of goodness and love remains truly convincing.”
Religious sisters. Homily at St. Patrick’s Cathe-dral, New York “In a special way I would like to express my esteem and gratitude to the religious women of the United States. What would the Church be without you? Women of strength, fighters, with that spirit of courage which puts you in the front lines in the procla-mation of the Gospel. To you, religious women, sisters and mothers of this people, I wish to say ‘thank you.’ a big thank you… and to tell you that I love you very much.
Refugees , to whom he referred in almost all his 20 addresses “We must not be taken aback by their numbers, but rather view them as persons.” It comes to me to think about Africa, “the exploited continent.” They went to pick up the slaves there, then the great resources. It’s the exploited continent. And, now the wars, tribal or not. But they have economic interests behind them. And, I think that instead of exploiting a continent or a na-tion, make investments instead so these people might have work and this crisis would have been avoided.
Arms trade and those who profit from it. The pursuit of “money that is drenched in blood, often innocent blood”.
“Every creature, particularly a living creature, has an intrinsic value, in its existence, its life, its beauty and its interdependence with other creatures. We Christians, together with the other monotheistic religions, believe that the universe is the fruit of a loving decision by the Creator, who permits man respectfully to use creation for the good of humanity and for the glory of the Creator; we are not authorised to abuse it, much less to destroy it. In all relig-ions, the environment is a fundamental good.
The exclusion of the weak and poor “The misuse and destruction of the environment are also accompanied by a relentless process of exclusion. In effect, a selfish and boundless thirst for power and material prosperity leads both to the misuse of available natural resources and to the exclusion of the weak and disadvantaged, either because they are differently abled (handicapped), or because they lack adequate information and technical expertise, or are incapable of decisive political action.
Economic and social exclusion is a complete denial of human fraternity and a grave offence against human rights and the environment
. The poorest are those who suffer most from such offences, for three serious reasons: they are cast off by society, forced to live off what is discarded and suffer unjustly from the abuse of the environment. They are part of today’s widespread and quietly growing “culture of waste”.
At press conference on plane back to Rome
The US Church’s challenge is staying close to the people, close to the people of the United States…not being a detached Church from the people but close to them, close, close, and this is something that the Church in the US has understood and understood well.
On the clerical sexual abuse of minors “When a priest abuses it is very serious be-cause the vocation of the priest is to make that boy, that girl grow toward the love of God, toward maturity and toward good, but instead of that they squashed them and this is nearly a sacrilege. Does he understand those who cannot forgive the abuse “Yes, I do. I pray for them. And I don’t judge them. Once, in one of these meetings, I met several people and I met a woman told me ‘When my mother found out that I had been abused, she became blasphemous, she lost her faith and she died an atheist.’ I understand that woman. I understand her, and God who is even better than me understands her. And I’m sure that that woman has been received by God. Because what was groped, destroyed, was her own flesh, the flesh of her daughter. I understand her. I don’t judge someone who can’t forgive. I pray and I ask God, because God is a champion in finding paths of solutions. I ask him to fix it.
On whether the Church can ordain women priests . “That cannot be done. Pope St. John Paul II after long, long intense discussions, long reflection said so clearly. Not because women don’t have the capacity. Look, in the Church women are more important than men, because the Church is a woman. (Using masculine and feminine articles in Italian) It is “la” Church, not “il” Church. The Church is the bride of Jesus Christ. And the Madonna is more important than popes and bishops and priests.