(Vatican Radio) Christians always feel the need to be forgiven and are on their way to an encounter with God. Those were the words of Pope Francis Thursday morning at Mass at the Casa Santa Marta. The Pope painted a portrait of the good Christian who, he said, must always feel the blessing of the Lord and go on to do good.
Listen to Lydia O'Kane's report
"The Christian is blessed by the Father, who is God" , Pope Francis said in his homily from St Paul's Letter to the Ephesians, contained in the first reading on Thursday. Focusing on the "traits of this blessing", he noted that "the Christian is a" person chosen.
The Father chose us one by one, he loves us and gave us a name
God calls us one by one, "not as an oceanic crowd." The Holy Father reiterated, “we have been chosen, expected by the Father:”
"Think of a couple, when expecting a baby: 'How will it be? And how will he or she smile? And talk? 'But I dare say that we, each of us, has been dreamed of by the Father as a father and a mother dreams of their awaited baby. And this gives you great security. The Father wanted you, not the mass of people, no, you, you, you. Each of us. And 'the foundation, is the basis of our relationship with God. We speak of a Father who loves us, who chose us, who gave us a name. "
It can also be noted, the Pope continued, when a Christian "does not feel chosen by the Father." But when they feel they belong to a community, "it is like a fan of a football club." "The fan – Pope Francis commented – is choosing the team and belongs to the football team."
The true Christian always feels the need of God's forgiveness
The Christian, therefore, "is chosen, he or she is a dream from God." And when we live like this, the Pope added, "our hearts are filled with great consolation," we do not feel "abandoned". "The second part of the Christian blessing is feeling forgiven. "A man or woman who does not feel forgiven," the Holy Father cautioned, is not fully "Christian":
"We have all been forgiven with the price of the blood of Christ. But what I have been forgiven of ? It’s a memory and a reminder of the bad things you have done, not your friend, your neighbor, you. 'What bad things have I done in life?' The Lord has forgiven these things. Here, I am blessed, I am a Christian. That is, the first part: I am chosen, dreamed by God, with a name that God gave me, loved by God. Second part: forgiven by God. "
The Christian is never still, but always on the way to do good
The third part, continued Pope Francis: the Christian "is a man and a woman walking towards fullness, towards an encounter with Christ who redeemed us":
"A Christian cannot stand still. The Christian must always move forward, he must walk. The Christian who stands still is the Christian who received the talent and for fear of life, fear of losing, fear of their boss, out of fear or convenience, buried it. He is calm and spends his life going nowhere. The Christian is a man on a journey, a woman walking, who are always doing good, trying to do good and going forward. "
This, summed up the Pope, is the Christian identity: "blessed, because they are chosen because they are forgiven and forging a path." We, he concluded, " are not anonymous, we are not proud", so as not to have "need of forgiveness. "We are not still." "May the Lord – in his invocation - be with us through the grace of the blessing he has given us, that is the blessing of our Christian identity."
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