Pope Francis Teaches .....

Let us allow ourselves to be consoled by God Consolation, should be the normal state for Christians Consolation, should be the normal state for Christians.

The Lord comforts us with tenderness, like mothers who caress their children. “Comfort, comfort my people, says your God,” because “her guilt is expiated.” This refers to the “consolation of salvation,” to the good news that we are saved. But we tend to resist consolation, as if we were safer in the turbulent waters of our problems. And how does the Lord give comfort? With tenderness. It is a language that the prophets of doom do not recognise: tenderness. It is a word that is cancelled by all the vices that drive us away from the Lord: clerical vices, the vices of some Christians who don’t want to move, of the lukewarm… Tenderness scares them. The Lord comforts with tenderness. Tenderness consoles. 

The Lord invites us to allow ourselves to be consoled by Him; and this is also helpful in our preparation for Christmas. And indeed, I would say that the habitual state of the Christian should be consolation. Even in bad moments.

The Lord knocks at the door with caresses.  When we suffer, we might not feel that consolation; but a Christian will not lose interior peace because it is a gift from the Lord, who offers it to all, even in the darkest moments. In these weeks leading up to Christmas, we should ask the Lord for the grace to not be afraid to allow ourselves to be consoled by Him

But [you might say] “I am a great sinner.” the Lord consoles like the shepherd who, if he loses one of his sheep, goes in search of it; like that man who has a hundred sheep, and one of them is lost: he goes in search of it. The Lord does just that with each one of us. [But] I don’t want peace, I resist peace, I resist consolation… But He is at the door. He knocks so that we might open our heart in order to allow ourselves to be consoled, and to allow ourselves to be set at peace. And He does it with gentleness. He knocks with caresses.

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Rev. Martin O’Connor

The Presbytery

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St Bede’s Catholic Church

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