By Jim Fair
“Yesterday, I received a letter from a sister who works as a Sign Language interpreter for the deaf.” These were the words with which Pope Francis began the Saturday morning liturgy in the Chapel of the Casa Santa Marta, reported Vatican News.
The Holy Father said he has come to understand how difficult it is for health care providers to care for persons with difficulties; “So let us pray for those who are always at the service of these persons with various disabilities”.
In his homily, he pointed out the “bold” preaching of apostles Peter and Paul. He noted that they were uneducated in the formal sense yet astonished the chief priests, the scribes and the elders:
“They do not know what to do…. They remained astonished… Instead of accepting the truth that they saw before them, their hearts were so closed that they chose the way of diplomacy, the way of compromise. They had really been backed into a corner because of their boldness. They did not know how to get out of the situation. It never entered their mind to say: ‘Could this be true?’”
The Pope pointed out the importance of the Greek word, parrhesia. It is often translated as boldness, frankness, or courage. It became “the style of Christian preachers in the Acts of the Apostles.”
“It is that Christian courage which drives someone to speak openly…. For example, in the Acts of the Apostles, it says that Paul and Barnabas sought to explain the mystery of Christ to the Hebrews with boldness and preached the Gospel boldly.,” the Holy Father explained.
He went on the content that parrhesia — boldness — is essential to the nature of a Christian. In fact, he said that is a Christian does not possess it “you are not a good Christian”.
Pope Francis concluded his homily with a prayer:
“May the Lord help us to always be like that: courageous. This does not mean imprudent – no, no. Courageous. The Christian’s courage is always prudent, but courageous”.
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