‘A Church without martyrs breeds distrust’

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On the second anniversary of the beatification of Archbishop Oscar Romero, who was killed in 1980 by military squadrons linked to the Regime in San Salvador as he defended the poor, Pope Francis recalled Romero’s religious fervor and passion for justice while warning the faithful against a ‘lukewarm’ Church. The Pope was speaking during Mass […]

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Doctrine unites, ideology divides

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True doctrine unites; ideology divides. That was the message of Pope Francis in the homily at the morning Mass at the Casa Santa Marta on Friday. The Pope based his reflections on the so-called Council of Jerusalem which, around the year 49 A.D., decided that gentile converts to Christianity would not have to be circumcised. […]

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Jesus’ peace is real and not the world’s anesthetized peace

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True peace is not man-made but a gift of the Holy Spirit.  “A peace without a cross is not the peace of Jesus” for it is only the Lord who can give us peace amidst tribulations. This was the central message of the homily of Pope Francis at Mass, Tuesday morning, in the chapel of […]

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Pope Francis denounces rigid Christians, calls for meekness in the Church

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“The first time the name ‘Saul’ appears,” he said, “is at the stoning of Stephen.” Saul, he observed, was a “young man, rigid, idealistic,” and he was “convinced” of the rigidity of the law. Even now there are people in the Church who use rigidity to cover-up their own sins. That was the warning of […]

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Preach Gospel with courage, prayer, and humility

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Courage prayer, and humility: these are the traits that distinguish the great “heralds” who have helped the Church to grow in the world, who have contributed to its missionary character. Pope Francis was speaking at the morning Mass at the Casa Santa Marta, taking his inspiration from the Liturgy and from the example of Sts […]

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Mediators or intermediaries

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Pope Francis offered the icons of Saint Polycarp, Saint Francis Saverio and Saint Paul to seminarians of Rome as he was about to be beheaded. As he did so, the Pope advised his audience to live the priesthood as authentic mediators between God and the people, joyful even on the cross, and not as intermediary […]

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The solitude of the shepherd

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Paul, John the Baptist, and Maximilian Kolbe — along with many other shepherds throughout the ages — not only lived out solitude, abandonment, and persecution, but also the “nearness of the Lord”, especially in moments of trials. In his homily during Mass on Tuesday, 18 October in the chapel at the Casa, Pope Francis reflected […]

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Be open to the Spirit, Who carries us forward

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True doctrine is not a rigid attachment to the Law, which bewitches as ideologies do. Rather, it is the revelation of God, which allows itself to be discovered more and more fully each day by those who are open to the Holy Spirit. (Vatican Radio) That was the message of Pope Francis at the morning […]

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Solemnity of Sts Peter and Paul

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The Church must avoid the risk of closing in on itself out of persecution and fear, the Pope said. At the same time, she must be able to see “the small openings through which God can work.” Prayer, he said, “enables grace to open a way out from closure to openness, from fear to courage, […]

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Pope Francis: homily for Mass with canonization

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Pope Francis delivered the homily at Mass on Sunday morning, during which he also presided over the canonization of two new saints: Stanislaus of Jesus and Mary, and Maria Elizabeth Hesselblad. The word of God, which we have just heard, points us to the central event of our faith: God’s victory over suffering and death. […]

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Corpus Domini homily

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« Do this in remembrance of me » (1 Cor 11 :24-25). Twice the Apostle Paul, writing to the community in Corinth, recalls this command of Jesus in his account of the institution of the Eucharist. It is the oldest testimony we have to the words of Christ at the Last Supper. “Do this”. That […]

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Pope Francis Homily for Pentecost Sunday

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“I will not leave you orphans” (Jn 14:18). The central purpose of Jesus’ mission, which culminated in the gift of the Holy Spirit, was to renew our relationship with the Father, a relationship severed by sin, to take us from our state of being orphaned children and to restore us as his sons and daughters. […]

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Burned away youth

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“To burn life away for noble causes”. This opportunity is offered to today’s youth who, immersed in a “culture of consumerism” and of “narcissism” are often dissatisfied and rarely happy. In the Mass celebrated at Santa Marta on Tuesday morning, 10 May, the Pope focused his reflection on the witness of missionaries — “the glory […]

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The cost of witness

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There is a “twofold witness” in Christian life: that of the Spirit who “opens the heart”, showing us Jesus, and that of the person who “with the power of the Spirit” proclaims “that the Lord lives”, even at the cost of “paying the price” of persecution. Once again the Holy Spirit and his action in […]

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Three dimensional Christians

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A Christian is a person of hope, who knows and witnesses that Jesus lives, that he is among us, that he prays to the Father for each of us and that he will come again. This is how Pope Francis summed up the relationship between every Christian and the Risen Jesus, during Mass at Santa […]

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When a man is down

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“Rise and go”, the Lord said to Saul, who had fallen to the ground on the road to Damascus, and He sent Ananias to baptize the converted persecutor. “Rise and go”, the Pope said, is also a call to each of us, because a Christian “must be on his feet with his head held high”, […]

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Celebrate the ‘yes’

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“Yes”. For a Christian there is no other response to God’s call. Above all we must never turn away, pretending not to understand. On 4 April, the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Lord, during Mass at Santa Marta, the Pope invited a “celebration of the ‘yes’”. On Monday morning, concelebrating with Francis were priests […]

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