VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The journey of faith always begins a little selfishly, seeking from God healing or help with a problem, but Christian maturity is allowing oneself to be purified and to arrive at the point of recognizing Jesus as savior, Pope Francis said.
Celebrating Mass Jan. 22 in the chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae where he lives, Pope Francis commented on Gospel stories that recount how the crowds flocked to Jesus hoping for healing.
“We can never follow God with a purity of intentions from the beginning,” the pope said. “It’s always a little for ourselves and a little because of God. To journey is to purify these intentions.”
Pope Francis, according to Vatican Radio, told the small congregation that the crowds originally followed Jesus because they were “a bit bored” by the way the Jewish elders of their day were teaching the faith and they felt oppressed by “the many commandments and precepts that were laid on their shoulders, but never reached their hearts.”
But when they saw and heard Jesus, “they felt something move inside them,” he said. “It was the Holy Spirit who awakened this and they went out to find Jesus.”
The way Jesus spoke and the physical healings he performed, the pope said, were simply signs of “another healing,” the definitive healing that led the people to a deeper relationship with God and to recognition that Jesus is the savior.
“He is the savior and we are saved by him. This is the most important thing,” the pope said. “This is the strength of our faith.”
“When we, for one reason or another, are feeling down, we should remember that Jesus prays for us and intercedes for us continually,” Pope Francis said. “So often we forget this.”
In a time of crisis CatholicPhilly.com keeps the information flowing
During the current coronavirus crisis, you can help CatholicPhilly.com deliver the kind of news people need to know about the Catholic Church, especially in the Philadelphia region, and the world in which we live ― every day.
Budgets are tight at this time, and CatholicPhilly's is no different than those of most families. We make sure your donation in any amount will go a long way toward continuing our mission to inform, form in the Catholic faith and inspire the thousands of readers who visit every month.
Here is how you can help:
- A $100 gift allows us to present award-winning photos of Catholic life in our neighborhoods.
- A $50 gift enables us to cover a news event in a local parish, school or Catholic institution.
- A $20 gift lets us obtain solid faith formation resources that can deepen your spirituality and knowledge of the faith.
- A small, automated monthly donation means you can support us continually and easily.
Won't you consider making a gift today?
Please join in the church's vital mission of communications by offering a gift in whatever amount that you can ― a single gift of $40, $50, $100, or more, or a monthly donation. Your gift will strengthen the fabric of our entire Catholic community.
Make your donation by credit card here:
Or make your donation by check:
222 N. 17th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103