At today’s Mass in Domus Sanctae Marthae, Pope Francis commented on a line from the first reading, when Peter says that it is in the name of Jesus that a crippled man has been healed.
The reading, Acts 4:1-12, includes these verses spoken by Peter, who had been arrested: “Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, answered them, ‘Leaders of the people and elders: If we are being examined today about a good deed done to a cripple, namely, by what means he was saved, then all of you and all the people of Israel should know that it was in the name of Jesus Christ the Nazorean whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead; in his name this man stands before you healed. He is the stone rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. There is no salvation through anyone else, nor is there any other name under heaven given to the human race by which we are to be saved.'”
Francis observed how Peter, who had denied Jesus, now stands with courage before the leaders of the people, explaining that it is thanks to the invocation of the name of Jesus that he has healed a cripple.
However, the Pope said, Peter does not pronounce that name on his own strength, rather he is “filled with the Holy Spirit.” In fact, he continued, “we cannot profess Jesus, we cannot talk about Jesus, we cannot say anything of Jesus without the Holy Spirit. It is the Spirit that impels us to profess Jesus, to speak about Jesus, to have faith in Jesus. Jesus who is always with us on our life’s journey.”
Pope Francis then told a story: “A humble man works in the curia of Buenos Aires. He has worked there for 30 years, he is the father of eight children. Before he goes out, before going out to do the things that he must do, he always says, ‘Jesus!’ And I once asked him, ‘Why do you always say, “Jesus?”‘ ‘When I say “Jesus,”‘ this humble man told me, ‘I feel strong, I feel I can work, and I know that He is with me, that He keeps me safe.'”
The Holy Father continued: “This man never studied theology, he only has the grace of Baptism and the power of the Spirit. And this testimony did me a lot of good too, because it reminds us that in this world that offers us so many saviors, it is only the name of Jesus that saves.”
“In order to solve their problems many people resort to fortune tellers and tarot cards,” the Pontiff remarked. “But only Jesus saves and we must bear witness to this! He is the only one.”
“Mary always leads us to Jesus,” as she did at Cana when she said: “Do whatever he tells you. Let us trust in the name of Jesus, let us invoke the name of Jesus, and let the Holy Spirit push us to say this prayer trusting in the name of Jesus … it will do us all good.”