“Oh Liberty, what crimes are committed in thy name!” These were the last words pronounced by Madame Roland, one of the vital participants of the French Revolution, before she lay her head on the block to be guillotined.
The word ‘charity’ almost always brings to mind material aid offered to the needy. And this it is: almsgiving is a praiseworthy habit, which has always been promoted by Holy Mother Church.
‘The sheep follow him, because they recognize his voice’ (Jn 10:4). The suggestive imagery of the shepherd with his flock is almost a synonym of the Episcopal ministry in the Church.
Perusing the pages of human history, and comparing ages long past, peoples distant from one another, and the most different cultures, we notice one common denominator: the presence of egoism, power struggles, greed and all the other vices related to pride. It is not surprising, since our first parents, Adam and Eve, fell into the trap of the evil one, thinking that by their disobedience they would become ‘like gods’ (cf Gen 3:5).
‘Pray for me!’ – these are words often uttered by Francis to the most varied audiences. And the more he says it, the more bewilderment he causes many Catholics, because its not unusual that he says this not only to faithful of the Catholic Church, but also to excommunicated persons, schismatics, muslims, communists, atheists, and others…
We live in a society often scarred by violence. And, the greater the violence, the more our society yearns for peace as avidly as a shipwrecked man looks to a lifeboat…
In the Acts of the Apostles, we find the intriguing story of an Ethiopian, minister of the Queen of Candace, who had travelled to Jerusalem to adore the true God. However, this high functionary of the court returned to his country full of uncertainties with respect to the Scriptures, which he meditated on without grasping their true meaning.
Ever since the beginning, God established matrimony as an indissoluble alliance and granted it a blessing that was “not forfeited by original sin, nor washed away by the flood.” In elevating matrimony to the dignity of a sacrament, Jesus Christ not only made this union more indissoluble and holy, but also willed that it reflect His own fidelity to the Church.
‘Charity begins at home’. This popular expression clearly transmits the attitude that an apostle of the Gospel should have. In fact, no one can give to others what he himself doesn’t possess.
There are few images that so authentically and poetically reflect the relationship between God and mankind, as the shepherd and his flock. “I am the good shepherd, My sheep hear my voice; I know them, and they follow me” (Jn 10:14, 27).