BERGOGLIO: “LOVE YOUR BROTHERS STARTNG FROM THE POOREST” The words of Pope Francis pronounced during the Regina Caeli in St. Peter’s square

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“The branchesi are not self-sufficient but depend on the vine, which is the source of their life. And so it is for the Christians. Grafted with the Baptism of Christ, we have received from Him the gift of a new life”. These were the words attere by Pope Francis during the Regina Caeli at St.Peter’s square. The successor of Peter, before reciting the Marianne prayer underlined that “if one is intimately united to Jesus, he will enjoy the gifts of the Holy Spirit, which– as St.Paul tells us – are ‘love,joy, peace, magnanimity, benevolence, goodness, faith, meekness,and self- control’”.

The true Christian, therefore, recognises himself in these behaviours and “does a lot of good towards his neighbor and society”. The bishop of Rome, during Children’s Day, victims of violence, has given them a “special greeting” and the Association Méter, thanking it for its commitment in trying to “prevent these crimes taking placei”. “We all need to commit ourselves – he exhorted – so that each person and especially children, are always difende and protected”. Following is the entire text of the words announced by Pope Francis.

Dear brothers and sisters, Good Day!
The gospel today presents Jesus during the Last Supper, the moment He knows His death is very near. His hour has come. For the last time, He is with His disciples and so wants to imprint well on their minds a fundamental truth: even when He will no longer physically be amidst them, they will be able to stay united to Him in a new way, and in this way bring many fruits. We all can be united in Jesus in a new way. If on the contrary one had to lose this union with Him, this comunion with Him, he would become sterile, even worse, damaging to the community. And to express this reality, this new way of being united to Him, Jesus uses the image of the vine and its branches and thus says: «As the branch canot bear fruit alone if it does ot stay within the vine,so you too, if you donot stay within me. I am the vine, and you the branches» (John 15, 4-5). With this image He teaches us to stay within Him, to be united in Him, even though He be not physically present.

Jesus is the vine, and through Him – like the sap in the tree – passes from the branches of the same Love of God, the Holy Spirit. And here: we are the branches, and through the parable of Jesus, wants to make us understand the importance of staying united in Him. The branches are not self-sufficient, but entirely depend on the vine, whch is the source of their life. And so it is for Christians. Grafted with the Baptism of Christ, we have freely received from Him the gift of a new life;and we can rest in vital communion with Christ. One must be faithful to his baptism and grow in friendship with the Lord through prayer every day, by listening and the docility of His Word– reading the Gospel -,participating in the Sacraments, especially in the Eucharest and Reconciliation.

If one is intimately united to Jesus, he will enjoy the gifts of the holy Spirit, which – as St Paul tells us – are «love, joy, peace, magnanimity, benevolence, goodness, faithfulness, meekness, self-control (Gal 5,22); and consequently will do much good to his neighbor and the community, he is a Christian. From these behaviours, in fact, one can recognise th true Christian, from the fruits one can recognise the tree. The fruits of this deep union with Jesus are marvellous: all our person is transformed by grace of the Spirit: soul, intelligence, will, our loved ones, and also our body because we are united in the spirit and in the body. We receive a new way of being, the life of Christ berme ours: we can think the way He does, act like He does ,see the world and the things with the eyes of Jesus. Consequently, we can love our brothers, startng from the poorest and suffering, just as He did, and love them with His heart and so brng into the world the fruits of goodness, charity and peace.

Each of us is a branch of an only vine; and all together we are called to bring these fruits of this common pertinence to Christ and to the Church. Let us confide in the intercession of the Virgin Mary, so that we may be live branches in the Church and testify coherently our faith – coherent right in our lives and in our thoughts and in our faith -, aware that all, acording to our particular vocations, are partecipants in the one and only salvic mission of Christ.

Transaltion provided by Marina Stronati

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