Pope's Morning Homily: Church Is Not Egocentric, Power-Driven

Warns When Wrong Impression Given, Church Becomes Sterile

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Pope Francis is lamenting that characteristics such as power-hungry and egotistic at times are appropriate for describng people of the Church.

According to Vatican Radio, during his daily morning Mass at Casa Santa Marta, the Pope reminded the faithful that the Church is instead a loving, tender mother

«Many times I think that in some places the Church is more like an entrepreneur than a mother,» he said, noting this makes the Church sterile.

Recalling the two miraculous births of Samson and John the Baptist, both born to women who were formerly sterile, the Pope suggested that situations can be turned around and this should give us hope.

Since this symbol of sterility as recounted in the  Bible is seen as the sign of a human person incapable of moving forward, he noted the Church wants to make us reflect on the issue.

“From sterility, the Lord is able to restart a new lineage, a new life.  And that is the message of today,» he said.

«When humanity is exhausted and can no longer go forward,» Francis said, «grace comes.»

Just as today’s message reminds us how the second Creation comes when the earth is exhausted, the Pope added that we do the same as we await the newness of God.

«That’s what Christmas is about,» the Holy Father said.

«We must open ourselves to the Spirit of God because we cannot do it by ourselves,» he added.

He explained that thr Church is a mother and only becomes a mother when she opens to the newness of God, to the strength of the Spirit.  

«When she says to herself: ‘I do everything, but I’ve finished, I can’t go forward!'» then, the Pope said, «the Spirit comes.”

Let’s pray, the Holy Father said, that this Christmas «our Church may be open to the gift of God, that she may allow herself to be surprised by the Holy Spirit and be a Church that gives birth, a mother Church,» never hypocritical.

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Deborah Castellano Lubov

Deborah Castellano Lubov is Senior Vatican & Rome Correspondent for ZENIT; author of 'The Other Francis' ('L'Altro Francesco') featuring interviews with those closest to the Pope and preface by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Parolin (currently published in 5 languages); Deborah is also NBC & MSNBC Vatican Analyst. She often covers the Pope's travels abroad, often from the Papal Flight (including for historic trips such as to Abu Dhabi and Japan & Thailand), and has also asked him questions on the return-flight press conference on behalf of the English-speaking press present. Lubov has done much TV & radio commentary, including for NBC, Sky, EWTN, BBC, Vatican Radio, AP, Reuters and more. She also has contributed to various books on the Pope and has written for various Catholic publications. For 'The Other Francis': http://www.gracewing.co.uk/page219.html or https://www.amazon.com/Other-Francis-Everything-They-about/dp/0852449348/

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