Saint Peter's Square
- Wednesday, 27 August 2014 -
"Don't let envy, jealousy or antipathy divide your parish."
During his weekly general audience, Pope Francis talked about the importance of unity. He called for Christians to recognize the sins that work against unity in local parishes and communities, like jealousy, envy and antipathy.
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
We affirm in the Creed that the Church is one and that she is holy. One because she has her origin in the Triune God, mystery of unity and full communion. Holy since she is founded by Jesus Christ, enlivened by his Holy Spirit, and filled with his love and salvation.
While we, the members of the Church, are sinners, the unity and holiness of the Church arise from God and call us daily to conversion. We have an intercessor in Jesus, who prays, especially in his passion, for our unity with him and the Father, and with each other.
Unfortunately, we know well the sins against unity – jealousy, envy, antipathy – which come about when we place ourselves at the center and which occur even in our parish communities. God’s will, however, is that we grow in our capacity to welcome one another, to forgive and to love, and to resemble Jesus. This is the holiness of the Church – to recognize the image of God in one another.
May we all examine our consciences and ask forgiveness for the times when we have given rise to division or misunderstanding in our communities, and may our relationships mirror more beautifully and joyfully the unity of Jesus and the Father.
I offer an affectionate greeting to all the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors present at today’s Audience, including those from England, Malta and Canada. May Jesus Christ confirm you in faith and make you witnesses of the holiness and unity of the Church. May God bless you all!
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