Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Pope Francis: The Church is a love story not a bureaucratic organization

(Vatican Radio) The Church is not a bureaucratic organization, but a love story. This was Pope Francis’ message during Wednesday’s Mass in the Chapel of the Casa Santa Marta.

Attending the Mass this morning were employees of the Institute for the Works of Religion, commonly called the Vatican bank. Cardinal Javier Lozano Barragán, President Emeritus of the Pontifical Council for Health Pastoral Care, concelebrated Mass with the Holy Father.

The day’s readings tell the story of the growth of the first Christian community. In his homily, the Pope warned against being tempted to make "deals" simply to get "more partners in this enterprise."

Instead, he said, “the road that Jesus willed for His Church is otherwise: the way of difficulties, the way of the Cross, the way of persecution . . . And this makes us wonder: what is this Church? Because it seems it is not a human enterprise."

The Church, he said, is "something else." The disciples do not make the Church – they are the messengers sent by Jesus. And Christ was sent by the Father: “The Church begins there,” he said, “in the heart of the Father, who had this idea . . . of love. So this love story began, a story that has gone on for so long, and is not yet ended. We, the women and men of the Church, we are in the middle of a love story: each of us is a link in this chain of love. And if we do not understand this, we have understood nothing of what the Church is."

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