Even today, they kill Christians in the name of God, but the Holy Spirit gives the strength to bear witness until martyrdom. Pope Francis made this reflection this morning during his daily Mass at Casa Santa Marta.
According to Vatican Radio, the Holy Father spoke on those who kill Christians for believing in and worshipping God, and how not only martyrs can bear witness with their lives, but all Christians can.
Reflecting on today’s Gospel in which Jesus announces the Holy Spirit to his disciples and how the Spirit will lead them to all truth, the Pontiff reflected how the Spirit also prepares faithful on how to properly give this witness.
Francis recalled Jesus saying,’I have many things to tell you, but right now you are not able to bear them.’ Yet, the Pontiff pointed out how the Lord said there would be the right time: ‘But when the Paraclete, the Spirit of truth, He will guide you into all truth.’
The Lord “speaks of the future, of the Cross that awaits us and speaks to us of the Spirit, which prepares us to give Christian witness,” Francis said.
Speaking of the recent and ongoing religious persecutions, the Pope said, “This is the Cross of Christ.”
Turing to the faithful Copts slaughtered on the shores of Libya, the Pope recalled his telephone conversation yesterday with the Coptic Patriarch Tawadros. “I remembered his faithful, who have been slaughtered on the beach because they are Christians,” the Pontiff said.
With the strength that the Holy Spirit had given him, Francis said, they were not offended. “They died with the name of Jesus on their lips.”
“This is martyrdom, the supreme witness,” Francis said.
There is also the testimony of every day, the Jesuit continued, for us to live out the fruitfulness of Easter.
For this reason, Jesus gives us the Holy Spirit, he said, “who guides us to the full truth, the whole truth, and makes us remember what Jesus tells us.”
“A Christian who does not take seriously this dimension ‘martyrdom’ of life has not yet understood the way that Jesus taught us: the path of ‘martyrdom’ of each day.
He noted there are the martyrs who give witness, defending others’ rights, children, and family.
Pope Francis concluded, praying, “We ask the Lord for the grace to receive the Holy Spirit that will make us remember the things of Jesus, who will guide us into all truth and prepare us every day to make this witness, to give this little martyrdom every day or a great martyrdom, according to the will of the Lord.”