Angelus 30 August 2015


ANGELUS ADDRESS: On the Good Samaritan

‘It’s good to ask ourselves these questions and often because, in the end, we will be judged on the works of mercy.’

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Below is a ZENIT translation of Pope Francis’ Angelus address today at noon to the faithful in St. Peter’s Square:
Before the Angelus:
Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!

Today, the liturgy speaks to us about the parable of the “Good Samaritan,” taken from the Gospel of Luke (10: 25-37). It, in its simple and inspiring story, indicates a way of life, in which the center of gravity is not ourselves, but others, with their difficulties, who we encounter on our journey and who make us question ourselves. Others make us question ourselves. And when others do not have this effect on us, something there is not right; something in such hearts is not Christian. Jesus uses this parable when speaking to the doctor of the law about the twofold commandment that allows you to enter into eternal life: ‘to love God with all your heart and your neighbor as yourself (vv. 25-28).’ “Yes – replies that doctor of the law- but, tell me, “who is my neighbor?” (V. 29). We too can ask ourselves this question: Who is my neighbor? Whom do I love as myself? My relatives? My friends? My fellow countrymen? Those of the same religion? … Who is my neighbor?
And Jesus responds with a parable. A man, on the road from Jerusalem to Jericho, was assaulted, beaten and abandoned by robbers. Going down that same street were a priest and then a Levite, who, while seeing the wounded man, do not stop and go straight past (vv. 31-32). Then a Samaritan, that is to say an inhabitant of Samaria, and as such, despised by the Jews for not observing the true religion; and yet he, himself, when he saw that poor wretch, “was moved with compassion. He approached him and bandaged his wounds […], took him to an inn, and took care of him “(vv. 33-34); and the next day, put him in the care of the innkeeper, paid for it and said he would pay everything else (cf. v. 35).
At this point, Jesus turned to the doctor of the law and asked him: “Which of these three, in your opinion, was neighbor to the robbers’ victim?” And of course – because he was intelligent – responds, “The one who treated him with mercy” (vv. 36-37). With these words, Jesus has reversed our way of looking at things. It is not up to us to try to categorize people, to see if they count as our neighbors. Rather, the decision to be, or not be a neighbor, depends on us. It depends on me. It depends on me to be or not be a neighbor to the person I meet who has need of my help, even if he’s a stranger, or even hostile. And Jesus concludes: “Go and do likewise ‘(v. 37). It’s a great lesson! And He says to each of us: “Go and do likewise,” especially to the brother or sister you see in trouble. “Go and do likewise.'” Do good works, do not just say words that go to the wind. A song comes to mind: “Words, words, words.” No. Please, do. Act. And by the good works that we do with love and joy for others, our faith grows and bears fruit. Let us ask ourselves – each of us responding in our heart – let us ask ourselves: Is our faith fruitful? Does our faith produce good works? Or it is rather sterile, and therefore more dead than alive? Am I ‘the neighbor’ or do I simply just pass along? Or am I among those who select people according to their own pleasure? It’s good to ask ourselves these questions and often because, in the end, we will be judged on the works of mercy. The Lord will say to us: ‘But you, you remember that time on the road from Jerusalem to Jericho? That man was me half dead. Do you remember? That hungry child was me. Do you remember? The migrant who many want to drive out it was me. Those grandparents alone, abandoned in nursing homes, it was me. That sick person alone in the hospital, that no one goes to see, was me.
May the Virgin Mary help us to walk along the paths of generous love towards others, the path of the Good Samaritan. May you help us live the main commandment that Christ left us. And this is the way to enter into eternal life.
[Original text: Italian]
[Translation by Deborah Castellano Lubov]
After the Angelus:
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Today is “Sea Sunday,” in support of the pastoral care of seafarers. I encourage seafarers and fishermen in their work, often hard and risky, as well as chaplains and volunteers in their valuable service. May Mary, Star of the Sea, watch over you!
And I greet all of you, the faithful of Rome and from many parts of Italy and the world.
I address a special greeting to the pilgrims from Puerto Rico; those Poles who have completed a relay race from Krakow to Rome – good! -; and I extend this greeting to participants in the great pilgrimage of the Family of Radio Maria to the Jasna Góra Monastery, now in its 25th year. But I was there I also heard some of my compatriots who are not silent. Argentines who are here, and make noise – [que hacen lío] – a special greeting!
I greet the families of the diocese of Adria-Rovigo, the Daughters of Charity of the Most Precious Blood, the Secular Order Teresian, the faithful of Limbiate and John Paul II Missionary Community.
I wish you all a good Sunday, and a hot Sunday! Please do not forget to pray for me. Good lunch and goodbye!
[Original text: Italian] [Translation by Deborah Castellano Lubov]
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