Saint Peter's Square
- Wednesday, 11 June 2014 -
Pope talks about the fear of the Lord in his weekly General Audience
Pope Francis ended a series on the seven gifts of the catechesis, talking about the fear of the Lord. He explained that it wasn't a dark feeling, but rather a joyful awareness that only God provides true peace. The Pope said this fear instills within Christians a child-like mentality of trust in their Father for protection from evil. He added that this gift from the Holy Spirit also makes Christians aware of sin and corruption, and leads them away from committing them.
SUMMARY OF THE POPE'S CATECHESIS IN ENGLISH
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
In our catechesis on the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, we now turn to the last of these gifts: fear of the Lord. We know that this is no servile fear, but rather a joyful awareness of God’s grandeur and a grateful realization that only in him do our hearts find true peace.
Through the fear of the Lord, we become, as Jesus asks us, like little children, trusting in the goodness and the protection of our heavenly Father. The Spirit enables us to persevere in loving obedience to the word of God.
Fear of the Lord is also a kind of "alarm”, awakening us to the presence of sin in our lives and reminding us that we will one day be held accountable to the just Judge.
When we begin to use other people, to live for money and empty pleasure alone, blaspheming God’s name and allowing ourselves to be corrupted, this spiritual gift comes to our aid and directs us to the right path.
Today let us pray that the fear of God, together with the other gifts of the Holy Spirit, will renew us in faith and constantly remind us that in God alone do we find our ultimate happiness, freedom and fulfillment.
I greet all the English-speaking pilgrims taking part in today’s Audience, including those from England and Wales, Scotland, Sweden, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, Japan, the Philippines, Australia and the United States.
Upon all of you, and upon your families, I invoke the grace and peace of the Lord Jesus and the manifold gifts of the Holy Spirit. God bless you all!
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