Here is a ZENIT translation of the message Pope Francis sen to participants in the 4th National Meeting of Missionary Groups concluding today in Santiago del Estero, Argentina. The two-day event is organized by the Argentinean National Commission for the Missions and the Pontifical Missionary Works of Argentina, on the topic: “Mission, A Style of Life.”
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I greet you affectionately and join you spiritually in the celebration of the 4th National Meeting of Missionary Groups. Let us remember always that we cannot show others what we ourselves have not seen or heard. Therefore, to be a missionary, before proclaiming and communicating, it is necessary to see. To see that Jesus who made himself small to reach our weakness, who assumed our mortal flesh, to clothe it with his immortality and who comes daily to meet us, to walk with us and to give us his friendly hand in difficulty.
Dear brothers, never forget the call, the first encounter with Jesus, the joy with which you received the first proclamation, perhaps from your parents, your grandparents, your catechists or teachers. And do not cease to pray, to pray for one another, to support one another mutually with prayer, and you will see how Jesus, through you, and despite your weakness, will work wonders before all peoples.
Do not forget either that the mission, in addition to being a passion for Jesus, is a passion for his People: Let us allow ourselves to be looked at by Jesus, but let us also learn to look as Jesus does — a look of tenderness, of understanding and of mercy, which leads us to touch the Lord’s wounds in the flesh of our needy brothers. To see Jesus in the other purifies the heart, freeing it from egoism, from second thoughts, from all worldly desires.</p>
I hope that these brief reflections will encourage you to continue building an outgoing Church, solidaristic groups that work to communicate the joy the Lord has put in our hearts.
May Jesus bless you and the Holy Virgin take care of you. And, please, I ask you to pray for me.
Vatican, October 10, 2015[Original text: Spanish] [Translation by ZENIT]