Consecrated people, Pope Francis says, have been persecuted for denouncing attitudes of worldliness, because the evil spirit prefers a riskless and lukewarm Church.
According to Vatican Radio, Pope Francis made this observation during his daily morning Mass at Casa Santa Marta, as he recalled Chapter 16 of the Acts of the Apostles, and stories of Paul and Silas in Philip.
Two years after beatification, the Pope remembered the Archbishop of San Salvador. Blessed Oscar Romero was killed by military squadrons linked to the military regime for denouncing violence against the poor.
In his homily, Francis decried how many are persecuted for telling the truth. “This is repeated in the history of salvation,” he stressed.
“In the Church,” he said, “when someone denounces so many ways of worldliness, he is looked at with crooked eyes.”
“I remember in my land many so many men and women who were good consecrated [people], not ideologues, but who said, ‘No, the Church of Jesus is so …’ – ‘This is communist, out!’ And they threw them away, They persecuted them,” he said.
“Think of the Blessed Romero, right? What happened to tell the truth. And many, many in the history of the Church, even here in Europe. Because? Because the evil spirit prefers a tranquil, risk-free Church, a business church, a comfortable church, in the comfort of warmth, lukewarm. ”
Francis also noted that the bad spirit always comes from the pockets, and lamented when money takes control.
Besides denouncing this corruption, Francis turned to the importance of joyfully announcing Jesus. He stressed the need for joy.
“And this is the path of our daily conversion: to move from a worldly, tranquil, safe, Catholic, yes, yes, but cozy, state of life, to the true proclamation of Jesus Christ, to the joy of Christ’s announcement.”
“To move from a religion that looks too much on earnings, [to] faith, and proclaiming: “‘Jesus is the Lord.”
This, he said, is the miracle that the Holy Spirit does.
Before concluding, Pope Francis highlighted: “A Church without martyrs gives mistrust; A Church that does not risk gives mistrust; A Church that is afraid to announce Jesus Christ and to drive away demons, idols, other ‘lords’, such as money, is not the Church of Jesus.”