Pope opens new series of weekly talks, on the nature of the Church
Catholic World News - May 29, 2013
The Catholic Church is “a mystery that we all live and in which we all take part,” Pope Francis said at his weekly public audience on May 29.
Beginning a new series of weekly talks, on the nature of the Church, the Holy Father said that the Church is “not an organization born out of an agreement between some persons,” but rather “the work of God,” born out of God’s desire to bring all mankind to Himself.
Pope Francis delivered his catechetical address after his customary tour around St. Peter’s Square in the popemobile. Caught by a burst of rain, the Pope was soaked in the open vehicle, but not deterred; he continued to greet pilgrims warmly. “God calls us, urges us to leave selfishness behind, the tendency to be wrapped up in oneself, and calls us to be part of his family,” the Pope said. All of salvation history tells of God’s plan, he added.
The Pope challenged those who claim to follow Christ while avoiding connection with the Church—“like those who say, ‘I believe in God, but not in the priests.” That attitude betrays a misconception, the Pope said: “It is precisely the Church that brings us Christ and brings us to God.”
Because the Church is a family of fallen humans, there will inevitably be defects caused by sin, the Pope continued. “But what is beautiful is that, when we realize that we are sinners we encounter the mercy of God who always forgives.” Sin, he said, should be recognized as an opportunity to show humility and to rejoice in God’s mercy.
“How much do I love the Church? Do I pray for her?” the Pope asked his audience. He urged the faithful to increase their devotion to the Church.
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