Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Pope Francis "The commandments free you from your selfishness and free you because there is the love of God that carries you forward." FULL TEXT + Video


Catechesis on the Commandments. 3: God's love precedes the law and gives it meaning

Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!

Today, this hearing will take place as last Wednesday. In Paul VI Hall there are many sick people and to keep them warm, because they are more comfortable, they are there. But they will follow the audience with the big screen and, even we with them, that is, there are not two hearings. There is only one. We salute the sick of the Paul VI Hall. And let us continue to speak of the commandments that, as we have said, more than commandments are the words of God to his people to walk well; loving words of a Father. The Ten Words begin like this: "I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, from the servile condition" (Exodus 20: 2). This beginning would seem extraneous to the actual laws that follow. But is not so.

Why this proclamation that God makes of himself and of liberation? Because you get to Mount Sinai after crossing the Red Sea: the God of Israel first saves, then asks for trust. [1] That is: the Decalogue begins with the generosity of God. God never asks without giving first. Never. First save, first give, then ask. This is our Father, good God.

And we understand the importance of the first declaration: "I am the Lord your God". There is a possessive, there is a relationship, one belongs to one. God is not a stranger: he is your God. [2] This enlightens the whole Decalogue and also reveals the secret of Christian action, because it is the same attitude of Jesus who says: "As the Father has loved me, I have loved you" (Jn 15: 9). Christ is loved by the Father and loves us with that love. He does not start from himself but from the Father. Often our works fail because we start from ourselves and not from gratitude. And who starts from himself, where does he arrive? Get to himself! He is incapable of making his way back on himself. It is precisely that selfish attitude that, joking, people say: "That person is an I, me with me, and for me". He comes out of himself and returns to himself.

The Christian life is above all the grateful response to a generous Father. Christians who follow only "duties" report that they do not have a personal experience of that God who is "our". I have to do this, this, this ... Only duties. But you're missing something! What is the foundation of this duty? The foundation of this duty is the love of God the Father, who first gives, then commands. Putting the law before the relationship does not help the journey of faith. How can a young person desire to be a Christian, if we start from obligations, commitments, coherences and not from liberation? But being a Christian is a journey of liberation! The commandments free you from your selfishness and free you because there is the love of God that carries you forward. Christian formation is not based on willpower, but on the acceptance of salvation, on letting oneself be loved: first the Red Sea, then Mount Sinai. Salvation first: God saves his people in the Red Sea; then in Sinai he tells him what he must do. But that people know that these things are done because they have been saved by a Father who loves him.

Gratitude is a characteristic trait of the heart visited by the Holy Spirit; to obey God we must first remember his benefits. Saint Basil says: "Whoever does not let those benefits fall into oblivion, is oriented towards good virtue and to every work of justice" (Short Rules, 56). Where does all this bring us? To exercise memory: [3] how many beautiful things God has done for each of us! How generous is our Heavenly Father! Now I would like to offer you a little exercise, in silence, everyone answers in his heart. How many beautiful things did God do for me? This is the question. In silence, each of us answers. How many beautiful things did God do for me? And this is the liberation of God. God does many beautiful things and frees us.

Yet someone can feel that he has not yet made a true experience of the liberation of God. This can happen. It could be that one looks inward and finds only a sense of duty, a spirituality as servants and not as children. What to do in this case? As did the chosen people. The Book of Exodus says: "The Israelites groaned for their slavery, they cried out wailing and their cry from slavery ascended to God. God listened to their lament, God remembered his covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. God looked at the condition of the Israelites, God gave thought "(Ex 2,23-25). God thinks of me.

The liberating action of God placed at the beginning of the Decalogue - that is, of the commandments - is the answer to this lamentation. We do not save ourselves, but from us can cry out for help: "Lord save me, Lord teach me the way, Lord caress me, Lord give me a little joy". This is a cry asking for help. This is up to us: to ask to be freed from selfishness, from sin, from the chains of slavery. This cry is important, it is prayer, it is consciousness of what is still oppressed and not liberated in us. 
there are many things not liberated in our soul. "Save me, help me, free me". This is a beautiful prayer to the Lord. God awaits that cry, because he can and wants to break our chains; God has not called us to life to remain oppressed, but to be free and live in gratitude, obeying with joy to the One who gave us so much, infinitely more than we can ever give to Him. This is beautiful. May God be always blessed for all he has done, does and will do in us!
Greetings in Various Languages to Pilgrims:
Je suis heureux de saluer les pèlerins venus de France et de divers pays francophones. Je forme le vœu que cette période estivale qui commence soit l’occasion pour chacun d’approfondir sa relation personnelle avec Dieu afin de le suivre plus librement sur la voie de ses commandements. Que Dieu vous bénisse !
I greet the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors taking part in today’s Audience, particularly those from Scotland, Ireland, Sweden, Greece, Australia, China, Vietnam and the United States of America. I also welcome the delegation from the NATO Defense College, with prayerful good wishes for their service to the cause of peace. Upon all of you, and your families, I invoke the joy and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ. God bless you all!
Gerne heiße ich die Brüder und Schwestern deutscher Sprache willkommen. Besonders grüße ich die verschiedenen Schulgruppen, die an dieser Audienz teilnehmen. Der Anfang des Dekalogs erinnert uns daran, dass Gott uns zuerst geliebt hat. Unser Leben nach den Geboten ist Antwort auf das liebende Handeln Gottes und Ausdruck unserer Dankbarkeit. Der Heilige Geist schenke uns stets seine Gnade.
Saludo cordialmente a los peregrinos de lengua española, en particular a los grupos provenientes de España y Latinoamérica. Los invito a que, recordando todo lo bueno que Dios ha hecho en ustedes, respondan con libertad y alegría a la llamada de Dios, que nos ama y nos libra de nuestras esclavitudes para que podamos vivir como sus hijos amados. Que Dios los bendiga. Muchas gracias.
Dirijo uma cordial saudação aos grupos vindos de Portugal e do Brasil e demais peregrinos de língua portuguesa, desejando que esta visita por ocasião da Solenidade dos Santos Apóstolos Pedro e Paulo possa confirmar a todos na fé, esperança e caridade. Que Nossa Senhora vos acompanhe e proteja!
أرحب بمودة بالحاضرين الناطقين باللغة العربية، وخاصة كورال "الفرح التام" القادم من مصر، وجوقة "نوسروتو" من لبنان، ومؤمنين كنيسة "المٌخلص". لقد أعطى الله الوصايا لشعبه بعد أن حرره من العبودية، مظهرا هكذا سخاء محبته الأبوية. فالله يرغب في أن يحل جميع قيودنا، كي نعيش الحياة والوصايا، لا بروح العبيد، ‏وإنما بحرية الأبناء. ليبارككم الرب جميعا ويحرسكم من الشرير!‏
Pozdrawiam serdecznie Polaków, którzy przybyli z Polski i zza granicy w pielgrzymce do Grobów św. Apostołów. Pozdrawiam pielgrzymów z Łodzi, towarzyszących swemu Arcybiskupowi, który otrzyma paliusz metropolity. Witam również nowo wyświęconych diakonów z Archidiecezji Krakowskiej i Diecezji Bielsko-Żywieckiej. Życzę wszystkim, by okres wakacji, który się rozpoczyna był dla was czasem wypoczynku i piękną okazją uwielbiania Boga za dzieło stworzenia. Z odwagą trwajcie w wierze, przyznając się zawsze do Jezusa. Z serca wam błogosławię.

I extend a cordial welcome to Italian-speaking pilgrims.

I am pleased to welcome the participants in the General Chapter of the Franciscan Immacolatine Sisters; the Carmelite Religious of Trivandrum; the School Sisters of Our Lady and the Cresimandi of the Citadel of Modena.

I greet the family home of Sant'Antonio Abate of Sassari; the Cima Community of Milan; the Emmaus Association of Lodi; the socio-cultural music association of Orosei and the Caracciolo Academy musical school in Rome.

A special thought for the young, the elderly, the sick and the newlyweds.

The day after tomorrow is the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, Patrons of Rome. We learn from these Apostles of the Lord the ability to testify with courage the Gospel of Jesus, beyond their differences, preserving the harmony and friendship that establish the credibility of any proclamation of faith.

[1] In the rabbinical tradition there is an illuminating text on the subject: "Why were the 10 words not proclaimed at the beginning of the Torah? [...] What can you compare to? To a man who, assuming the government of a city, asked the inhabitants: "May I reign over you?". But they answered: "What have you done us good for you to claim to reign over us?". So, what did he do? He built them defensive walls and a channel to supply the city with water; then he fought for them wars. And when he asked again: "May I reign over you?", They replied: "Yes, yes". So the Place brought Israel out of Egypt, divided the sea for them, sent the manna down to them and climbed the water of the well, brought them flying quails and finally fought for them the war against Amaleq. And when he asked them, "May I reign over you?", They replied: "Yes, yes" »(The gift of the Torah, Commentary on the Decalogue on Ex 20 in the Mekilta by R. Ishamael, Rome 1982, p.49) .

[2] Cf. Benedict XVI, Lett. Enc. Deus caritas est, 17: "The love story between God and man consists precisely in the fact that this communion of will grows in communion of thought and feeling and, thus, our will and God's will coincide more and more : the will of God is not for me an alien will, that the commandments impose on me from the outside, but it is my own will, on the basis of the experience that, in fact, God is more intimate to me than I am same. Then abandonment in God grows and God becomes our joy ".

[3] See Homily at the Mass in S. Marta, 7 October 2014: "[What does it mean to pray?] It is to remember before God our history. Because our history [is] the story of his love for us ». Cf. Detti e fatti dei fathers of the desert, Milan 1975, p. 71: "Oblivion is the root of all evil".

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