The Pope says that religious need to follow Christ to the Cross during their lives, but then need not fret, for He will take care of the rest.
Speaking to clergy, men and women religious and seminarians at St. Mary’s School in Kenya’s capital of Nairobi this afternoon, the Pope set aside his prepared text and, in his native Spanish, reminded them how being faithful and serving the Gospel guarantees happiness and success in ministry and discipleship.
[A transcription and translation of the Pope’s delivered discourse will be made available soon.]
The Argentine Pontiff touched on various themes, but stressed that religious are called to follow Jesus until their final steps of this life to the Cross. He warned against ambition, riches, and trying to be an important person in the world. “There’s no room for that,” he said.
“All you have to worry about is going to the Cross,” the Pope pointed out, adding, “After, let Him worry about the Resurrection.”
“I now tell you this seriously because we know, in the Church, it is not a business, not an NGO,” he said, noting, “It is a mystery, a mystery of Christ’s gaze upon each one of us, who says follow me.” Francis stressed that what precedes us is the love and tenderness of Jesus.
Another point the Pope stressed was the importance of prayer. Even if you find yourself dozing when you are committed to praying, the important thing is that you are praying, he said.
“It is clear that when Jesus calls us, He doesn’t canonize us. We are still the same sinners,” the Pope said. “I would ask if there is anyone here–any priests or religious–who doesn’t feel that he or she is a sinner: Raise your hand. All of us are sinners,” he said, including himself.
The Pope also encouraged them to weep over the things which are perplexing in the world, such as the killing of innocent children. Francis recalled St. Peter’s tears, and noted that Christ made him the first pope.
You can watch the Pope’s address at the Vatican YouTube channel with simultaneous translation into English provided by Monsignor Mark Miles. It begins at about the 48:30 mark: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zF_H-TfklpQ