We continue looking at that acrostic reflection Pope Francis gave in his address to the curia last December. If you’ve been following, you’ll note that instead of just one word, he is giving some thought to related or contrasting principles. Today, a contrast:
6. Innocuousness and determination: innocuousness makes us cautious in our judgments and capable of refraining from impulsive and hasty actions. It is the ability to bring out the best in ourselves, in others and in all kinds of situations by acting carefully and attentively. It consists of doing unto others what we would have them do to us (cf. Mt 7:12 and Lk 6:31). Determination is acting with a resolute will, clear vision, obedience to God and solely for the supreme law of the salus animarum (cf. CIC can. 1725).
“Not harmful or offensive” is how one online dictionary defines that i-word. Pope Francis elaborates a bit on that. He isn’t asking the curia (and us) to be passive, but rather to be thoughtful in the sense of taking great care with others so as to produce the very best with them and for them.
Doesn’t that turn the modern culture on its ear? Instead of cutting the knees out from under our rivals, and wishing our companions would do poorly to we would shine by default, the Holy Father is not only suggesting the application of the Golden Rule, but that we should actually be diligent–“determined”–in doing so.