Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Pope Francis

9/5/2014 (11 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

The Church is mother. The birth of Jesus in Mary's womb, in fact, is a prelude to the rebirth of every Christian in the womb of the Church, since Christ is the firstborn of many brethren (cf. Rom 8:29).

The Church is our mother because she has delivered us in Baptism. Whenever a child is baptized, he becomes a son of the Church, from that day, he is in the Church which cares for him as a caring mother, she makes us grow in faith and shows us, with the power of the Word of God, the way of salvation, defending us from evil.

St. Peters

St. Peters

Highlights

By Pope Francis

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

9/5/2014 (11 months ago)

Published in Europe

Keywords: Church, Holy Mother Church, ecclesiology, Pope Francis, Vatican, St Peters


VATICAN CITY (Catholic Online) - On Wednesday, September 3, 2014, Pope Francis continued his beautiful teachings on the nature of the Church to the faithful gathered in St Peters Square. This installment is on the Church as Mother. We offer the complete teaching below.

******

The Church as Mother
Pope Francis


Dear brothers and sisters,

In the previous catechesis, we were able to point out several times that you don't become Christian by yourself, through your own efforts, on your own, but by being born and nurtured in the faith in the midst of the People of God, that is the Church.

In this sense the Church is a true mother, our mother Church - it's nice to say so, eh? - a mother who gives us life in Christ and in the communion of the Holy Spirit, brings us into a common life with all our brothers and sisters.

1. In this, her motherhood, the Church has as its model the Virgin Mary, the highest and most beautiful model that can be. The first Christian communities have already highlighted this and the Second Vatican Council expressed it in an admirable way (cf. Const. Lumen Gentium, 63-64). Mary's motherhood is certainly unique, singular, and was accomplished in the fullness of time, when the Virgin gave birth to the Son of God, conceived by the Holy Spirit.

And yet, the Church's motherhood places you right in continuity with that of Mary, as its prolongation in history. The Church, in the fruitfulness of the Spirit, continues to generate new children in Christ, always listening to the Word of God and in obedience to his plan of love.

The Church is mother. The birth of Jesus in Mary's womb, in fact, is a prelude to the rebirth of every Christian in the womb of the Church, since Christ is the firstborn of many brethren (cf. Rom 8:29).

And our first brother is Jesus, born of Mary, who is the model for all of us born into the Church. We understand, then, how the relationship that unites Mary and the Church is as deep: looking to Mary, we find the most beautiful and tender face of the Church; looking to the Church, we recognize the sublime features of Mary. We Christians are not orphans, we have a mom, we have a mother and this is great. We are not orphans. The Church is mother, Mary and mother.

2. The Church is our mother because she has delivered us in Baptism. Whenever a child is baptized, he becomes a son of the Church, from that day, he is in the Church which cares for him as a caring mother, she makes us grow in faith and shows us, with the power of the Word of God, the way of salvation, defending us from evil.

The Church has received from Jesus the precious treasure of the Gospel, not to keep it for herself, but giving it generously to others - as a mother does. In this service of evangelization the maternity of the Church is shown in a particular way -- committed, as a mother, offering her children the spiritual nourishment that feeds and makes fruitful the Christian life.

All, therefore, are called to welcome with an open mind and heart the Word of God that the Church dispenses every day, because this Word has the ability to change us from the inside. Only the Word of God has this capacity to change us for the better from the inside out, from our deepest roots -- this powerful Word of God. And who gives us the Word of God?

The mother Church, she gives her children this word, raising us throughout our whole life with this word. And this is great, it's mother Church who, with this word, really changes us from the inside. The words that mother Church gives us transform us, making our humanity beat not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

In her motherly care, the Church strives to show believers the way to go to live a fruitful existence of joy and peace. Illuminated by the light of the Gospel and upheld by the grace of the sacraments, especially the Eucharist, we can orient our choices towards the good and pass, with courage and hope, moments of darkness and more tortuous paths.

The path of salvation, through which the Church guides us and accompanies us with the power of the Gospel and the support of the Sacraments, gives us the ability to defend ourselves from evil.

The Church has the courage of a mother who knows that she must protect her own children from the dangers resulting from the presence of Satan in the world, to bring them to the encounter with Jesus. This defense also consists of a call to vigilance: be on guard against the deception and seduction of evil.

Because even if God has conquered Satan, his temptations always return. We know this, we are all under attack. It is not for us to be naďve, but to be vigilant and stand firm in the faith, not to resist the advice of a mother, resist the help of mother Church. A good mother always accompanies her children in difficult moments.

3. Dear friends, this is the Church: this is the Church that we all love, the Church that I love. A mother who has at heart the welfare of their children, that has the capacity to give life to her children. We must not forget, however, that the Church is all the baptized - not just priests or bishops, no we all are.

We are all in the Church, we are all children, also other Christians .We, all the baptized, men and women, together are the church. How many times in our life do we not give witness to this motherhood of the Church, to this maternal courage of the Church! Let us entrust ourselves to Mary, then, because she will teach us to have her same maternal spirit towards our brothers and sisters, with the sincere ability to accept, forgive and inspire confidence and hope.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for July 2015
Universal:
That political responsibility may be lived at all levels as a high form of charity.
Evangelization: That, amid social inequalities, Latin American Christians may bear witness to love for the poor and contribute to a more fraternal society.



Comments


More Europe

Not London, New York or Paris: Luanda, Angola the most expensive city on Earth for... Watch

Image of According to Mercer's annual Cost of Living survey, places Luanda as by far the priciest city for foreign workers to live.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It's nowhere as well known as New York, Paris or London - but Luanda, Angola remains the most expensive city by far for expatriates to live in. Luanda ranked as the most expensive city to live in for the third time in a row. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


Discovery of purported 'Nazi gold train' taken seriously in Poland Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The declarations from a German man and Polish man of discovery a long-lost Nazi train filled with gold and other treasures is being taken seriously by Poland's deputy culture minister. He says he is "convinced" the train exists. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic ... continue reading


Abandoned truck holds over 20 dead migrants in Austria Watch

Image of Truck found abandoned carrying the bodies of more than 20 dead migrants

By Kenya Sinclair (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A police manhunt takes place after the discovery of an abandoned truck containing the bodies of migrants attempting to cross Austria's border. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Austrian police report up to 50 migrants suffocated in the back of a refrigerated food ... continue reading


Vatican involvement in Ashley Madison Web site leak disproven Watch

Image of At first glance, the claim seems questionable - why would top Church officials sworn to celibacy sign up for a Web site for married people, and no less one that promotes adultery?

By CNA/EWTN News

Early this week, a leak of personal data from millions of users of Ashley Madison, a Web site designed to arrange extramarital affairs, wreaked havoc on and off the internet. Vatican City (CNA/EWTN News) - At least two suicides have been reported in conjunction ... continue reading


Four-star General reveals horrendous WWII scenes in never-before-seen photographs (PHOTOS) Watch

Image of

By Hannah Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Four-star General Charles Day Palmer detailed the fights in Western Front during World War II by taking snapshots of the bombed-out cities and lifeless bodies. He kept personal photos of the battlefields in Germany and France and is now releasing them to the public for ... continue reading


Brainwashed teenage girl taken away from radical jihadi parents Watch

Image of Judge Anthony Hayden, pictured, today compared the radicalization of the 16-year-old girl, known as B as similar to that as child sex abuse.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A 16-year-old girl in East London has been removed from her home after a judge ruled that she was being radicalized by her parents with Islamic State propaganda. The straight-A student, known only as "B" was stopped last year when she tried to fly to Syria to ... continue reading


HEROISM - AND EXTREME COWARDICE: American service members disarm terrorist aboard train - as train's staff lock themselves in office, denying help Watch

Image of U.S. serviceman Spencer Stone answering reporters' questions at the U.S. embassy in Paris this past weekend.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It was an example of high heroism - undercut with a despicable act of cowardice and selfishness. As an Islamic militant from Morocco threatened life and limb a high-speed train bound for Paris with a Kalashnikov, American service members with a British man were ... continue reading


Afghan man rips up Koran sparking threatening riot in overcrowded German refugee camp Watch

Image of A riot sparked in a refugee camp in Germany, leaving 15 civilians injured.

By Linky C. (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A riot broke in an overcrowded German refugee camp shelter after an Afghan man damaged the Koran and threw pages of it in the toilet. MUNTINLUPA CITY, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - One resident from an overcrowded German refugee camp tore up a Koran and dumped pages ... continue reading


Legendary lost Nazi train loaded with gold treasure found by two men Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A train commandeered by the Nazis - reportedly loaded with gold, gems and valuable art vanished into a system of secret tunnels in the Polish countryside as the Germans fled advancing Soviet forces at the end of World War II. That story has gone down in Polish ... continue reading


Stalking Prince George: William and Kate condemn paparazzi photographers inappropriately hanging around play area Watch

Image of

By Hannah Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

After finding paparazzi photographers hiding near the play area of the two-year-old prince, Kensington Palace has released a stern letter from the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge condemning the inappropriate action harming the privacy of their toddler. William and Kate ... continue reading


All Europe News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Thessalonians 5:1-6, 9-11
1 About times and dates, brothers, there is no need ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 1st, 2015 Image

St. Giles, Abbot
September 1: St. Giles, Abbot (Patron of Physically Disabled) Feast day - ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter