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Jesus is our hope

Monday, 9 September 2013


(by L'Osservatore Romano, Weekly ed. in English, n. 38, 18 September 2013)


It is sad to see priests who have lost hope. For this reason at the Mass he celebrated at Santa Marta on Monday morning, Pope Francis asked the priests present to cultivate this virtue, “which for Christians has the name of Jesus”. “I see many priests here today”, he said, “and I am prompted to tell you something, it’s a bit sad when one comes across a priest without hope, without that enthusiasm which gives hope; and it is very beautiful when one comes across a priest who is reaching the end of his life still filled with that hope, not with optimism, but with hope, and who is sowing hope”. “For it means”, he said further, that “this priest is attached to Jesus Christ. And the People of God need us priests to give them this hope in Jesus which makes all things new, which is capable of making all things new and is doing so: at every Eucharist he recreates Creation, in every act of charity he recreates his love within us”.

The Pontiff spoke of hope, linking today’s reflection with those of the previous days in which he had held Jesus up as fullness, as the centre of Christian life, the one Bridegroom of the Church. Thus today he commented on the concept expressed in St Paul’s Letter to the Colossians (cf. 1:26; 2:2, 3): Jesus “a mystery, a hidden mystery, God”. A mystery, that of God, who “appeared in Jesus”, who is “our hope: he is our all, he is the centre and he is also our hope”.

Optimism, he explained, is a human attitude that depends on so many things; but hope is something else: “it is a present, a gift of the Holy Spirit and for this reason Paul was to say that it never disappoints”. It also has a name; and “this name is Jesus”. It is impossible to say one hopes in life unless one hopes in Jesus. “It would not be a question of hope”, he clarified, “rather, it would be good humour or optimism, as in the case of those sunny, positive people who always see a glass as half full and not half empty”.

The true teaching to draw from the day's Gospel is that Jesus “is not a healer, he is a man who recreates life. And this”, the Bishop of Rome underlined, “gives us hope, because Jesus came precisely to work this great miracle, to recreate all things”.



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