Sunday, May 31, 2020

On Pentecost, Pope Francis explains "The Holy Spirit is fire that burns sins and creates new men and women; it is a fire of love..." Full Text - Video


REGINA CAELI
St. Peter's Square
Sunday, 31 May 2020

Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!
Now that the square is open, we can go back. It is a pleasure!
Today we celebrate the great feast of Pentecost , in memory of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the first Christian community. Today's Gospel (cf. Jn20,19-23) brings us back to Easter evening and shows us the risen Jesus who appears in the Upper Room, where the disciples took refuge. They were afraid. "He stood in the middle and said to them:" Peace be with you! "" (V. 19). These first words pronounced by the Risen Lord: "Peace be with you", are to be considered more than a greeting: they express forgiveness, the forgiveness accorded to the disciples who, to tell the truth, had abandoned him. They are words of reconciliation and forgiveness. And we too, when we wish peace to others, are forgiving and also asking for forgiveness. Jesus offers his peace precisely to these disciples who are afraid, who find it hard to believe what they have seen, that is, the empty tomb, and underestimate the testimony of Mary of Magdala and the other women. Jesus forgives, always forgives, and offers his peace to his friends. Don't forget: Jesus never tires of forgiving. It is we who tire of asking for forgiveness.
By forgiving and gathering the disciples around him, Jesus makes them his ChurchChurch, which is a community reconciled and ready for mission. Reconciled and ready for the mission. When a community is not reconciled, it is not ready for mission: it is ready to discuss within itself, it is ready for internal [discussions]. The encounter with the risen Lord turns the existence of the Apostles upside down and transforms them into courageous witnesses. In fact, immediately afterwards he says: "As the Father sent me, I also send you" (v. 21). These words make it clear that the Apostles are sent to extend the same mission that the Father has entrusted to Jesus. "I am sending you": it is not time to be locked up, nor to regret: regret the "good times", those times spent with Master. The joy of the resurrection is great, but it is an expansive joy, which should not be kept to itself, it is to give it.
And just to animate the mission, Jesus gives the Apostles his Spirit. The Gospel says: "He blew on them and said:" Receive the Holy Spirit "" (v. 22). The Holy Spirit is fire that burns sins and creates new men and women; it is a fire of love with which the disciples will be able to "set on fire" the world, that love of tenderness which favors the little ones, the poor, the excluded ... In the sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation we received the Holy Spirit with his gifts: wisdom , intellect, advice, fortitude, knowledge, piety, fear of God. This last gift - the fear of God - is just the opposite of the fear that paralyzed the disciples before: it is love for the Lord, it is the certainty of his mercy and his goodness, is the confidence to be able to move in the direction indicated by him,
The feast of Pentecost renews the awareness that the life-giving presence of the Holy Spirit dwells in us. He also gives us the courage to come out of the protective walls of our "cenacoli", small groups, without resting in the quiet life or locking ourselves in sterile habits. Let us now raise our thoughts to Mary. She was there, with the Apostles, when the Holy Spirit came, protagonist with the first community of the admirable experience of Pentecost, and we pray that she will obtain the ardent missionary spirit for the Church.

After the Regina Caeli
Dear brothers and sisters ,
the Amazon Synod ended seven months ago Today, the feast of Pentecost , we invoke the Holy Spirit to give light and strength to the Church and society in the Amazon, severely tested by the pandemic. Many are infected and deceased, even among indigenous peoples, particularly vulnerable. Through the intercession of Mary, Mother of the Amazon, I pray for the poorest and most defenseless of that dear Region, but also for those of the whole world, and I appeal that no one miss health care. Treating people, not saving for the economy. Treating people, who are more important than the economy. We people are temples of the Holy Spirit, the economy is not.
Today in Italy the National Day of Relief is celebrated, to promote solidarity towards the sick. I renew my appreciation to those who, especially in this period, have offered and offer their testimony of care for others. I remember with gratitude and admiration all those who gave their lives by supporting the sick in this pandemic. We pray silently for doctors, volunteers, nurses, all health workers and many who have given their lives during this period.
I wish everyone a good Sunday of Pentecost. We need the light and strength of the Holy Spirit so much! The Church needs it, to walk in harmony and courageous witnessing to the Gospel. And the whole human family needs it, to get out of this more united and no longer divided crisis. You know that from a crisis like this one does not come out the same, as before: one comes out either better or worse. That we have the courage to change, to be better, to be better than before and to be able to positively build the post-crisis of the pandemic.


Please don't forget to pray for me. Have a good lunch and goodbye, in the square!
FULL TEXT + Image - Vatican.va - Translation from Italian

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