Evangelical Pope Francis Calls Us to Live in the Heart of the Church for the Sake of the World
We have in Francis a man who shows us the way to live the Gospel from the heart
I agree with my friend Alejandro. Pope Francis teaches, preaches and lives with his heart. His gospel simplicity informs an evangelical way of life which speaks through both word and action. He lives in the heart of the Church for the sake of the world and calls all of us to do the same. Faith is a verb, it must be exercised. By living in the heart of the Church for the sake of the world we participate in bringing the world back to God. This missionary mindset has inspired missionary ages in the past and brought extraordinary change to cultures. It can - and it will - once again!
Matthews Gospel presents other images to communicate this mission: "The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that a person took and sowed in a field. It is the smallest of all the seeds, yet when full-grown it is the largest of plants. It becomes a large bush, and the 'birds of the sky come and dwell in its branches. The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed with three measures of wheat flour until the whole batch was leavened." (Matt. 13: 31 - 33) St. Jose Maria Escriva once opined, "May Our Lord be able to use us so that, placed as we are at all the cross-roads of the world - and at the same time placed in God - we become salt, leaven and light. Yes, you are to be in God, to enlighten, to give flavor, to produce growth and new life. But don't forget that we are not the source of this light: we only reflect it. (St. Jose Maria Escriva, Friends of God, 250) The power to effect redemptive change in the world comes from the life of God within us. It is amazing how little leaven it takes to raise a loaf of bread. That is because within those little particles of yeast is found the power to ferment, to change the lump of wet dough into a loaf of aromatic, tasty, nourishing bread. The power contained within the yeast is not activated unless it is mixed and kneaded into the dough. Once you work the leaven in, it is still hidden to the eye but how it transforms that loaf! So it is with Christians within human culture!
The power within us is the same power that raised Jesus from the dead (See Romans 8:11)! It is the power of the Holy Spirit. All we are asked to do is to mix it up. We have to get in the loaf. We must be in the world - where Jesus is - in order to be used to accomplish His ongoing work of redemption. This is a challenging time for the Church in the United States and the West. It is the kind of historic period which two thousand years of Church history has shown us produces heroes and saints - and sometimes martyrs. We should ask the Lord for the grace to be open to whatever he calls us to do. Before they were called Christians in Antioch, the early followers of Jesus were referred to as the Way (Acts 19, 9, 23). Their living faith was expressed in the way they lived their lives in the midst of the world of their age. They were missionaries. So are we, no matter what our state in life or specific vocation.
Our Evangelical Pope Francis calls us to live in the heart of the Church for the sake of the world. He also shows us the way.
Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for December 2013
General Intention: Victimized Children. That children who are victims of abandonment or violence may find the love and protection they need.
Missionary Intention: Prepare the Savior's Coming. That Christians, enlightened by the Word incarnate, may prepare humanity for the Savior's coming.
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