EG 141: Looking Beyond Failings

Vasnetsov_Maria_MagdalenePope Francis offers a personal reflection on the Lord in this section of Evangelii Gaudium:

141. One cannot but admire the resources that the Lord used to dialogue with his people, to reveal his mystery to all and to attract ordinary people by his lofty teachings and demands. I believe that the secret lies in the way Jesus looked at people, seeing beyond their weaknesses and failings: “Fear not little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom” (Lk 12:32); Jesus preaches with that spirit. Full of joy in the Spirit, he blesses the Father who draws the little ones to him: “I thank you Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to babes” (Lk 10:21). The Lord truly enjoys talking with his people; the preacher should strive to communicate that same enjoyment to his listeners.

Mercy. Again.

Plus, the acknowledgement that Jesus asked great things of people. He did not lower his bar. And yet many of today’s often-ineffective preachers lament many things: a de-Christianization of the West, a loss of a sense of sin, too much television and sports. Is effective preaching really as simple as looking beyond the sins of the people?

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
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