Prayer and renewed openness are needed to overcome division and threats to unity, the Pope said during his weekly general audience catechesis today.
Addressing thousands of pilgrims and tourists in St. Peter’s Square, the Pope asked those present whether they were indifferent to disunity, or did they firmly believe they can and must walk in the direction of reconciliation and full communion?
The Pope reminded them that the Church is tempted by the Evil One who tries to divide her and has a history of “grave and painful separations”.
“What is certain,” the Pope said, “is that, in one way or another, behind theses lacerations are always pride and egoism, which are the cause of all disagreement and which render us intolerant, incapable of listening and of accepting that there is a vision or a position different from ours.”
To overcome such divisions, the Pope said “without a doubt, prayer must not be lacking, in continuity and in communion with that of Jesus.”
In addition, the Lord “asks us for renewed openness,” the Pope said. “He asks us not to close ourselves to dialogue and to encounter, but to take up everything that is valid and positive that is offered to us also from one who thinks differently from us or holds different positions.”
The Lord, the Pope added, “asks us not to fix our look on what divides us, but rather on that which unites us, seeking to know and to love Jesus better and to share the richness of His love.
“This entails concretely adherence to truth, together with the capacity to forgive one another, to feel ourselves part of the same family, to consider ourselves a gift to one another and to do many good things together, many works of charity,” Francis said.
In closing, the Pope urged the faithful to go forward in unity. “History has separated us, but we are on the way towards reconciliation and communion!,” he said. “ And when the goal might seem too distant, almost unreachable, and we feel prey to discouragement, let us be encouraged by the idea that God cannot close His ear to the voice of His Son Jesus and to hear His and our prayer, that all Christians be truly one.”
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