Pope at Santa Marta: Our Own Forces Are Weak, We Need God

Reminds Faithful That God Has the Power ‘To Do What We Do Not Dare to Think or Ask’

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At this morning’s Mass at Casa Santa Marta, Pope Francis said that left to ourselves, we are weak, but he encouraged the faithful to turn to God and the Holy Spirit, who not only have the power to strengthen us, but also to do the unthinkable.

Reflecting on St. Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians, the Pope recalled how St. Paul’s experience of Jesus “led him to leave everything behind» because «he was in love with Christ.» 

According to Vatican Radio, the Holy Father reminded those present that, like the Apostle, when we bend our knees before the Father and humble ourselves before Him, He «has the power to do much more than we can ever think or ask.»

“Our own forces are weak,” he said. “We cannot go forward without the power of the Spirit. Without the grace of the Spirit, we cannot be Christians.”

The Pope went on to say that the Spirit changes hearts and keeps Christians moving forward in virtue, to fulfill the commandments.

«This is a mystical experience of Paul and it teaches us the prayer of praise and the prayer of adoration. Before our pettiness, our many, selfish interests, Paul bursts out in praise, in this act of worship and asks the Father to send us the Holy Spirit to give us strength and to be able to move forward.”

Paul, he said, helps us understand the love of Christ and that Christ consolidates us in love, seen through his prayer to the Father: ‘Thank you, because you are able to do what we do not dare to think.’

Reflecting on Paul’s inner life, the Holy Father said, we can understand how the Apostle «gave up everything and considered it all rubbish, in order to gain Christ and be found in Christ.”

“It does us good to think of this, it does us good to worship God,” he said. “It does us good to praise God, to enter this world of amplitude, of grandeur, generosity and love.”

Pope Francis concluded, noting that this active worship allows us “to move forward in the great commandment – the only commandment, which is the basis of all others – love. Love God and love your neighbor.»

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