#ShortNews: “Faith is not a spectacle, but conversion to Christ”

According to Pope Francis, faith and religion are not a “show”, but a way of converting our thoughts to the ways of Christ. Delivering a homily at his morning Mass on Monday at the Vatican’s Casa Santa Marta chapel, Pope Francis said that through the readings of the day, the Church wants us to reflect on the conversion of our thoughts, way of thinking, as well as our actions and feeling in conformity with Christ.

Pope Francis said that the Church urges us to convert our actions through fasting, almsgiving and penance. Our actions, he said must be like Christ, in the spirit of the Beatitudes.

Pope Francis said one can recite the entire Creed or the dogmas of the Church but unless one does it with a “Christian spirit”, it means nothing. The Pope thus asked Christians to pray for the grace of discernment and conversion of thought.

Read More: http://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope-francis/mass-casa-santa-marta/2018-03/pope-francis-homily-santa-marta-spectacle-thinking-like-christ.html


2018 Lenten Message of His Holiness Pope Francis

“Because of the increase of iniquity, the love of many will grow cold” (Mt 24: 12)


Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Once again, the Pasch of the Lord draws near! In our preparation for Easter, God in his providence offers us each year the season of Lent as a “sacramental sign of our conversion”. Lent summons us, and enables us, to come back to the Lord wholeheartedly and in every aspect of our life.

With this message, I would like again this year to help the entire Church experience this time of grace anew, with joy and in truth. I will take my cue from the words of Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew: “Because of the increase of iniquity, the love of many will grow cold” (24:12).

These words appear in Christ’s preaching about the end of time. They were spoken in Jerusalem, on the Mount of Olives, where the Lord’s passion would begin. In reply to a question of the disciples, Jesus foretells a great tribulation and describes a situation in which the community of believers might well find itself: amid great trials, false prophets would lead people astray and the love that is the core of the Gospel would grow cold in the hearts of many.

False prophets

Let us listen to the Gospel passage and try to understand the guise such false prophets can assume.Read More »

#ShortNews: Pope’s message for Lent: beware false prophets, cold hearts

The Pope’s annual message is a meditation on a verse from St. Matthew’s Gospel (24:12): “Because of the increase in iniquity, the love of many will grow cold.” The message was released by the Vatican on February 6, in anticipation of the penitential season of Lent, which begins with Ash Wednesday on February 14.

In his message the Holy Father warns against false prophets, who lead people away from the love of God. “They can appear as snake charmers, who manipulation human emotions,” he writes. “They appeal to our vanity, our trust in appearances, but in the end they only make fools of us.”

Read More: http://press.vatican.va/content/salastampa/en/bollettino/pubblico/2018/02/06/180206c.html

#ShortNews: Violence discredits religion, Pope says

On the last friday morning, in the Clementine Hall of the Vatican Apostolic Palace, Pope Francis received in audience the participants in the Conference “Tackling violence committed in the name of religion”.

I would begin by reiterating what I have often stated, and in particular during my visit to Egypt: “God, the lover of life, never ceases to love man, and so He exhorts us to reject the way of violence. Above all and especially in our day, the religions are called to respect this imperative, since, for all our need of the Absolute, it is essential that we reject any ‘absolutizing’ that would justify violence. For violence is the negation of every authentic religious expression… We have an obligation to denounce violations of human dignity and human rights, to expose attempts to justify every form of hatred in the name of religion, and to condemn these attempts as idolatrous caricatures of God” (Address to Participants in the International Peace Conference, Al-Azhar Conference Centre, Cairo, 28 April 2017).

Read More: http://press.vatican.va/content/salastampa/en/bollettino/pubblico/2018/02/02/180202a.html

#ShortNews: Beatitudes are ‘born of a merciful heart,’ Pope says at Mass in Santiago

At a Mass celebrated on January 16 in an outdoor park in Santiago, Chile, Pope Francis said that the Beatitudes are “born of the merciful heart of Jesus.”

The Pontiff reminded the congregation that the Sermon on the Mount was prompted “when Jesus saw the crowds.” The point, the Pope said, is that Jesus responds not to “ideas or concepts” but to “faces, persons.” He went on to say that the Beatitudes are “not the fruit of a hypercritical attitude or the cheap words of those who think they know it all, yet are unwilling to commit themselves to anything or anyone, and thus end up preventing any chance of generating processes of change and reconstruction in our communities and in our lives.”

An estimated 400,000 people attended the papal Mass in O’Higgins Park, where St. John Paul II had celebrated Mass for more than one million during his visit to Chile in 1987.

Read More: http://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2018-01/chile-journey-mass-o-higgins-park.html

#ShortNews: Pope’s January prayer intention: religious freedom in Asia

In the vastly diversified cultural world of Asia, the Church faces many risks and her task is made more difficult by the fact of her being a minority.

These risks, these challenges are shared with other minority religious traditions, with whom we share a desire for wisdom, truth and holiness.

When we think of those who are persecuted for their religion, we go beyond differences of rite or confession : We place ourselves on the side of the men and women who fight to avoid renouncing their religious identity.

Let us pray for all of them, so that Christians, and other religious minorities in Asian countries, may be able to practice their faith in full freedom.

Read More: http://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2018-01/pope–let-us-pray-for-religious-liberty-in-asia.html

#ShortNews: Pope Francis preaches on God’s tenderness

The tenderness of God, as his defining trait, was at the heart of the Pope’s homily this morning at Mass at the Casa Santa Marta. The theme was taken from the first reading from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah and the psalm where God says of himself: “… his tenderness expands over all creatures”.

“It seems that our God wants to sing us a lullaby. Our God is gifted at this. His tenderness is this: he is a father and a mother. Many times he said: “But if a mother forgets her son, I will not forget you. He carries us in his deep within. He is the God who with this dialogue makes himself small to make us understand, to make us trust in him and we can tell him with the courage of Paul who changes the word and says: “, Abba Father”. Father … It’s the tenderness of God.”

The great that becomes small and the small that is great.

Read More : http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2017/12/14/pope_at_mass_the_tenderness_of_god_is_father_and_mother/1354759