Sunday, September 1, 2019

Pope Francis "Jesus invites us to selfless generosity, to open the way to...the very love of God that awaits us..." and Names 13 New Cardinals + Video

Pope Francis prays the Angelus at St. Peter's Square
Sunday, 1 September 2019

Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!

First of all, I have to apologize for the delay, but there was an accident: I was locked in the elevator for 25 minutes! There was a drop in voltage and the elevator stopped. Thank God the Fire Department came - I thank them so much! - and after 25 minutes of work they managed to get it going. A round of applause to the Fire Brigade!

This Sunday's Gospel (cf. Lk 14: 1.7-14) shows us Jesus participating in a banquet in the home of a leader of the Pharisees. Jesus looks and observes how the guests run, they hurry to get the first places. It is a rather widespread attitude, even in our days, and not only when we are invited to a lunch: usually, we look for the first place to affirm a presumed superiority over others. In reality, this race in the first places hurts the community, both civil and ecclesial, because it ruins fraternity. We all know these people: climbers, who always climb to go up, up ... They hurt the fraternity, they damage the fraternity. Faced with this scene, Jesus tells two short parables.

The first parable is addressed to the one who is invited to a banquet, and urges him not to put himself in the first place, «because - he says - there is not another guest more worthy of you, and the one who invited you and he comes to tell you: "Please go back, give him the place!" ». A shame! "Then you will shamefully occupy the last place" (see verses 8-9). Instead, Jesus teaches us to have the opposite attitude: "When you are invited, go to the last place, because when the one who invited you comes, he tells you:" Friend, come ahead! "" (V. 10). Therefore, we must not seek the attention and consideration of others on our own initiative, but rather let others be the ones to give it to us. Jesus always shows us the way of humility - we must learn the way of humility! - because it is the most authentic, which also allows for authentic relationships. True humility, not fake humility, the one that in Piedmont is called the quacia mugna, no, not the one. True humility.

In the second parable, Jesus addresses the one who invites and, referring to the way of selecting the guests, tells him: «When you offer a banquet, he invites the poor, the lame, the lame, the blind; and you will be blessed because they do not have to repay you "(vv. 13-14). Here too, Jesus goes completely against the current, manifesting as always the logic of God the Father. And it also adds the key to interpreting this speech. And what is the key? A promise: if you do so, "for you will receive your reward at the resurrection of the just" (v. 14). This means that those who behave in this way will have the divine reward, much higher than the human exchange: I do you this favor by waiting for you to give me another one. No, this is not Christian. Humble generosity is Christian. Human exchange, in fact, usually distorts relationships, makes them "commercial", introducing personal interest into a relationship that should be generous and free. Instead, Jesus invites us to selfless generosity, to open the way to a much greater joy, the joy of being participants in the very love of God that awaits us, all of us, in the heavenly banquet.

The Virgin Mary, "humble and high rather than a creature" (Dante, Paradiso, XXXIII, 2), help us to recognize ourselves as we are, that is, small; and to rejoice in giving without return.
After the Angelus

Dear brothers and sisters,

Today, 1 September, is the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation. An ecumenical prayer, which animates the awareness and the commitment to protect our common home, starting from a more sustainable personal and family lifestyle. From today until October 4, the feast of St. Francis of Assisi, it is a time favorable to the praise of God for all his creatures and to the assumption of responsibility in the face of the cry of the Earth.

I greet all of you, from Italy and from various parts of the world. In particular, I greet the Ukrainian pilgrims - Slava Jisusu Khristu! - arrived from different countries on the occasion of the Synod of Bishops of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, which will take place in Rome in the coming days. I greet the Sisters and the young women in formation of the Institute of San Giuseppe Benedetto Cottolengo. Thank you! Thank you for your testimony! Thank you for what you do and for what you teach us; forward, forward! The cyclists of Cunardo and the faithful of Cerro di Bottanuco; the Catholic Action group of Lecce and the young people of San Matteo della Decima, Gallo Ferrarese and Capriate San Gervasio.

Next Wednesday, God willing, I will leave for an apostolic journey to Africa, to visit the peoples of Mozambique, Madagascar and Mauritius. I ask you to accompany me with prayer, so that this pastoral visit may bear the desired fruits.
On October 5th I will hold a Consistory for the appointment of ten new Cardinals. Their origin expresses the missionary vocation of the Church which continues to proclaim the merciful love of God to all the people of the earth. Here are the names of the new cardinals:
Mons. Miguel Ángel Ayuso Guixot, Presidente del Pontificio Consiglio per il Dialogo Interreligioso;
Mons. José Tolentino Calaça de Mendonça, Archivista e Bibliotecario di Santa Romana Chiesa;
Mons. Ignatius Suharyo Hardjoatmodjo, Archbishop of Jakarta;
Mons. Juan de la Caridad García Rodríguez, Archbishop of  San Cristóbal de la Habana;
Mons. Fridolin Ambongo Besungu, Archbishop of  Kinshasa;
Mons. Jean-Claude Hollerich, Archbishop of  Lussemburgo;
Mons. Álvaro Leonel Ramazzini Imeri, Bishop of  Huehuetenango;
Mons. Matteo Zuppi, Archbishop of Bologna;
Mons. Cristóbal López Romero, Archbishop of  Rabat;
Padre Michael Czerny, S.J., Sottosegretario della Sezione Migranti del Dicastero per il Servizio dello Sviluppo Umano Integrale.
Together with them, I will combine with the members of the College of Cardinals two Archbishops and a Bishop who have distinguished themselves for their service to the Church:
Mons. Michael Louis Fitzgerald, Archbishop Emeritus of  Nepte;
Mons. Sigitas Tamkevičius, Archbishop Emeritus of di Kaunas;
Mons. Eugenio Dal Corso, Bishop Emeritus of Benguela.
Let us pray for the new Cardinals so that, confirming their adhesion to Christ, they may help me in my ministry as Bishop of Rome for the good of all the holy faithful people of God.

And I wish everyone a good Sunday. Please don't forget to pray for me. Good lunch and goodbye!

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