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Pope Francis reflects on Holy Spirit’s gift of fortitude

Catholic World News - May 14, 2014

Continuing his weekly catechesis on the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, Pope Francis devoted his May 14 general audience to the gift of fortitude.

Pope Francis referred to the parable of the sower and said that “with the gift of fortitude the Holy Spirit frees the soil of our heart from torpor, uncertainties and all the fears that can stop it, so that the Word of God can be put into practice, in an authentic and joyful way.”

“There are difficult moments and extreme situations in which the gift of fortitude is manifested in an extraordinary, exemplary way,” the Pontiff continued. “The Church shines with the testimony of so many brothers and sisters who have not hesitated to give their lives, in order to remain faithful to the Lord and His Gospel … All of us know people, people who have experienced difficult situations, so much pain, let us think of those men and women who have a difficult life, who fight for the survival of their family, educate their children. They do this because the Spirit of fortitude helps them.”

Pope Francis concluded:

With this, we must not think that the gift of fortitude is only necessary on some occasions or in certain situations. This gift must be the base note of our being Christians, in our ordinary everyday lives …

Dear friends, sometimes we may be tempted to allow ourselves be overtaken by laziness or despondency, especially when faced with the hardships and trials of life. In these cases, do not lose heart, but invoke the Holy Spirit, so that with the gift of fortitude He can lift our hearts and communicate new vigor and enthusiasm to our lives and our following Jesus.

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  • Posted by: unum - May. 15, 2014 9:56 AM ET USA

    I can think of any number of times that I have been challenged on abortion, gay marriage, movie content, etc. and found wanting - both in preparation and in my willingness to speak out when necessary. Pope Francis now reminds us that I forgot that the Holy Spirit was waiting to help if I had but asked. Thank you Holy Father.

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