THE SERVANT GENERAL
ON POPE FRANCIS
THE HOLY SPIRIT KEEPS US GOING
The Holy Spirit showed us a new way of living out our charism
of evangelization and mission. It is LCSC. It was discerned
over years, in consultation with bishops, clerics and lay
leaders. It has produced good fruit that can readily be seen.
It has been accepted enthusiastically by parish priests who
would not afford the same reaction to CFC-FFL, or who might
even be against CFC. It is a lay response to the call to the
New Evangelization, in a situation in the Church where there
are hardly any New Evangelization initiatives. Perhaps we
can say that LCSC indeed is a movement that has come from
the Holy Spirit.
Pope Francis says that the Holy Spirit makes the Church go
beyond the limits, to go ever forward. But of course. We humans
think with our limited human minds, thinking of our limited
human resources, relying on our limited human experience.
The Holy Spirit of God, the almighty omnipotent God, has no
such limitations. Our evangelization stalls, and our life
and mission stalls as well. But the Spirit moves ever forward.
He shows us new ways. We can move forward in the power of
the Spirit, if only we are willing to transcend the seeming
Pope Francis says that a common temptation with us is to bar
the path of the Holy Spirit, or to drive it in another direction.
There are still some among us who insist not on moving with
the Spirit in LCSC. They think they know better. That is pride,
hardness of heart, or simply folly.
But the Lord has already shown us the way. As Pope Francis
says, who are we to say, No Lord this is not the way? Who
are we to close the door to the action of the Holy Spirit?
What we need to do is to ask the grace of docility to the
Onward to the New Evangelization!
Pope's Morning Homily: Holy Spirit Keeps Church Moving Forward
Makes Church Go 'Beyond the Limits' and Shouldn't Be Obstructed
CITY, May 12, 2014 ( Zenit.org) - "Who are we to close
the doors" to the Holy Spirit?
was the question that Pope Francis repeated this morning during
his homily at Mass at Casa Santa Marta, a homily dedicated
to the conversion of the first pagans to Christianity. The
Holy Spirit, he reiterated, is
what makes the Church to go "beyond the limits, go ever
Spirit blows where it wills, but one of the most common temptations
of those who have faith is to bar its path and drive it in
one direction or another – a temptation that was not
alien even in the early days of the Church, as the experience
of Simon Peter in today’s reading from the Acts of the
community of pagans welcomes the proclamation of the Gospel
and Peter is an eyewitness to the descent of the Holy Spirit
on them. First, he hesitates to make contact with what he
had always considered "unclean" and then he suffers
harsh criticism from the Christians of Jerusalem, shocked
by the fact that their leader had eaten with the "uncircumcised"
and had even baptized them.
a moment of internal crisis that Pope Francis recalls with
a hint of irony:
was unthinkable. If, for example, an expedition of Martians
were to come tomorrow, and some of them were to come to us,
here... Martians, right? Green, with that long nose and big
ears, just like children paint them... And one says: 'But
I want to be baptized!' What would happen?"
understands his error when a vision enlightens him to a fundamental
truth: that which has been purified by God cannot be called
"profane" by anyone, the Pope explains. And in narrating
these facts to the crowd that criticized him, the Apostle
calms them all with this statement: "If, then, God gave
them the same gift He gave to us when we came to believe in
the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I to be able to hinder God?"
the Lord shows us the way, who are we to say: 'No, Lord, it
is not prudent! No, let’s do it this way'.
Peter in that first diocese - the first diocese was Antioch
- makes this decision: ‘Who am I to admit impediments?'
A nice word for bishops, for priests and for Christians. Who
are we to close doors? In the early Church, even today, there
is the ministry of the ostiary [usher]. And what did the ostiary
do? He opened the door, received the people, allowed them
to pass. But it was never the ministry of the closed door,
Pope Francis repeated: God has left the guidance of the Church
"in the hands of the Holy Spirit." The Holy Spirit,
he continued, “will teach us everything" as Jesus
said, and "remind us what Jesus taught us": that
the Holy Spirit “is the living presence of God in the
keeps the Church going, keeps the Church moving forward. More
and more, beyond the limits, onwards. The
Holy Spirit with His gifts guides the Church. You cannot understand
the Church of Jesus without this Paraclete, whom the Lord
sends us for this very reason. And He
makes unthinkable choices, but unimaginable!
To use a word of St. John XXIII: it
is the Holy Spirit that updates the Church. Really, he really
updates it and keeps it going.
we Christians must ask the Lord for the grace of docility
to the Holy Spirit,” the Pope said in
closing. “Docility in this Spirit, who speaks to us
in our heart, who speaks to us in all of life’s circumstances,
who speaks to us in the Church's life, in Christian communities,
who is always speaking to us."