Live as children of God, not slaves to sin, Pope preaches at year’s end
January 02, 2015
On the evening of December 31, Pope Francis asked those assembled in St. Peter’s Basilica whether they are choosing to live as free children of God or as slaves to sin.
“We were estranged from Him because of original sin, which separated us from our Father: our filial relationship was profoundly wounded,” he preached during Vespers, which was accompanied by the chanting of the Te Deum and exposition and benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. “Therefore, God sent his Son to rescue us at the price of His blood. And if there is a rescue, it is because there is a slavery.”
“Do we live as children or as slaves?” he continued. “Do we live as baptized persons in Christ, anointed by the Spirit, rescued and free? Or do we live according to the corrupt, worldly logic, doing what the devil makes us believe is in our interest?”
Recalling that the Israelites in the desert longed for the onions and garlic of their former slavery, the Pope said that “the nostalgia of slavery nests in our heart, because it is seemingly more reassuring than liberty, which is far more risky. How happy we are to be enthralled by many fireworks, apparently beautiful but which in reality last only a few instances! This is the reign of the moment!”
“When a society ignores the poor, persecutes them, criminalizes them, and constrains them to join the Mafia, that society is impoverished to the point of misery, it loses its freedom and prefers ‘the garlic and the onions’ of slavery, of the slavery of its egoism, of the slavery of its pusillanimity,” he added. “That society ceases to be Christian.”
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- Celebrazione dei primi Vespri della Solennità di Maria Santissima Madre di Dio e Te Deum di ringraziamento per l’anno trascorso (Holy See Press Office)
- Zenit translation
- Solemn year-end Vespers in St Peter's (Vatican Radio)
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