Pope Francis Address to CELAM 5: Unity

Continuing with this address of the Holy Father to his brother bishops of Latin America. Pope Francis is concerned with the quality of unity. Let’s read to see what he thinks of it.

When the disciples returned excited by the mission they had carried out, Jesus said to them: “Come away by yourselves to a lonely place” (Mk 6:31).  How greatly we need to be alone with the Lord in order to encounter anew the heart of the Church’s mission in Latin America at the present time.  How greatly we need to be recollected, within and without!  Our crowded schedules, the fragmentation of reality, the rapid pace of our lives: all these things might make us lose our focus and end up in a vacuum.  Recovering unity is imperative.

Does the crowding of our lives really lead to disunity. I can see this. Even as we are busy, we grow weary. Many people lack the energy to make and foster true bonds with others, even those in their own families. The Holy Father urges our mutual relationship with the Lord above the human qualities we can bring to bear for the mission of the Gospel.

Where do we find unity?  Always in Jesus.  What makes the mission last is not the generosity and enthusiasm that burn in the heart of the missionary, even though these are always necessary.  It is rather the companionship of Jesus in his Spirit.

If we have other reasons for serving, we could find ourselves adrift:

If we do not we set out with him on our mission, we quickly become lost and risk confusing our vain needs with his cause.  If our reason for setting out is not Jesus, it becomes easy to grow discouraged by the fatigue of the journey, or the resistance we meet, by constantly changing scenarios or by the weariness brought on by subtle but persistent ploys of the enemy.

If we find ourselves cast off from unity with Christ, it may be our own fault. Getting tired and discouraged isn’t necessarily a sign of the enemy, but could just be momentary fatigue. When true weariness sets in, that’s often when I would question my motivations. For whom am I doing this? Often, that’s when it’s about me.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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