VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The gift of the Holy Spirit gives Christians the grace they need to conduct themselves as children of God and brothers and sisters to each other, Pope Francis said on Pentecost.
Through the death and resurrection of Jesus and the gift of the Holy Spirit, Christians are freed from “the condition of being orphans into which we had fallen” because of sin, the pope said May 15 during Pentecost Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica.
“We were made to be God’s children,” he said. “It is in our DNA.”
Looking around, the pope said, one can see signs of how many people really do feel like orphans: feeling alone and sad even when surrounded by people; trying to free oneself from God; “spiritual illiteracy,” which makes people incapable of praying; and in the difficulty people have in seeing others as brothers and sisters, children of the same God.
“Strengthening our relationship of belonging to the Lord Jesus, the Spirit enables us to enter into a new experience of fraternity,” Pope Francis said. “By means of our universal brother — Jesus — we can relate to one another in a new way; no longer as orphans, but rather as children of the same good and merciful Father. And this changes everything!”
Reciting the “Regina Coeli” prayer afterward with visitors in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis focused on how the grace of the Holy Spirit helps Christians concretely live out their love for God and for others.
“Love for a person, including for the Lord, is demonstrated not with words, but with actions,” he said. When Jesus tells his disciples, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments,” he is telling them that their entire lives should reflect that love.
“Being Christian is not principally about belonging to a certain culture or adhering to a certain doctrine, but rather binding your life, in every aspect, to the person of Jesus and, through him, to the Father,” Pope Francis said.
Help us keep you informed -- CatholicPhilly.com can't do it without youDuring CatholicPhilly.com's fall donation campaign, you have a way to help us deliver the kind of news you need to know about the Catholic Church, especially in the Philadelphia region, and the world in which we live. Every household's costs keep rising, and we're no different. We make sure your dollars in any amount 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.
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 check:
222 N. 17th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Or by credit card here: