(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis, continuing his catechesis on Christian hope at his Wednesday General Audience, told pilgrims that God’s hope calls us to be “channels of humility and simplicity for all.”
“The hope that we have been given does not separate us from others, nor does it lead us to discredit or marginalize them.”
Those were Pope Francis’ words at his weekly General Audience in the Paul VI Hall on Wednesday as he continued his catechesis on Christian hope, dedicating his audience to the theme “Hope does not disappoint”.
The Pope underlined that God does not have favourites and does not exclude anyone, but opens his home to all human beings beginning with the least.
Hope, the Holy Father remarked, “is a gift of which we are called to become ‘channels’, with humility ‘and simplicity’, for all.”
During his catechesis and drawing inspiration from St Paul, Pope Francis said that “as children we were always taught that it is not good to boast. Yet, Saint Paul surprises us by twice telling us to boast.” This Saint, continued the Holy Father, tells us “to boast of the abundant grace we receive in Jesus Christ” through the gifts of faith and love.
When we do this, the Pope observed, “we know God’s peace, which flows into our lives and relationships.”
According to St Paul, Pope Francis said, afflictions too can be something to boost about. For God’s peace is not the absence of fears, disappointments, or suffering, he explained, “ but rather, it reminds us that God loves us and is always with us.”
In remarks to Polish pilgrims on Wednesday, the Pope also recalled, Patrons of Europe, Saints Cyril and Methodius.
Even today, he said, “ they remind Europe, and all of us, of the need to maintain the unity of faith, tradition, Christian culture and to live the Gospel each day.”
Official Synthesis of the Catechesis — February 15th 2017
Dear Brothers and Sisters: As children we were always taught that it is not good to boast. For when we boast about who we are or what we have, we disrespect those who are less fortunate. Yet, Saint Paul surprises us by twice telling us to boast. First, he tells us to boast of the abundant grace we receive in Jesus Christ through the gift of faith. God has created all things as a gift of love, through which he makes known his plan of salvation fulfilled in Jesus. He invites us to make this grace the cause of all our praise and joy. When we do this, we know God’s peace, which flows into our lives and relationships. But Saint Paul also tells us to boast of our afflictions. For God’s peace is not the absence of fears, disappointments, or suffering. Rather, it reminds us that God loves us and is always with us. This peace, Saint Paul says, bears patience, for even in the most difficult moments, we know that the mercy and goodness of the Lord remain with us, that nothing can separate us from God. Christian hope then is not based on who we are or what we are capable of, but on God’s love for each one of us. May we be instruments of hope, so that our greatest boast will be of a Father who excludes no one, but opens his home to all. And may we be a people who sustain one another with this message of Christian hope.