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Pope: Joy of children and elders is the true sign of God's presence in the Church

2013-09-30

During his daily morning Mass at the Vaticans Casa Santa Marta, Pope Francis explained that the Church must avoid falling into so called functionalism, meaning putting efficency before everything else. As an example, he asked that the Church always look out for children and the elderly, whose combination offers wisdom and the future. 

POPE FRANCIS
"I understand, the disciples wanted to be efficient, they wanted the Church to move ahead without problems and this can be a temptation for the Church: the Church of functionalism! The well organized Church! Which is fine, but not without memory or without promise! The Church cannot go on like this or it will be a Church of power struggles, a Church of jealousies among the baptized and many other things that exist when there is no memory and no promise."

The Pope also added a true sign of Gods presence in the Church and in society, is seen through the joy and respect of children and the elderly.

EXCERPTS OF THE POPE'S HOMILY
(Source: Radio Vaticana)

"The future of the people is right here…in the elderly and in the children. A people who does not take care of the elderly and children has no future because it will have no memory and it will have no promise! The elderly and children are the future of a people!  it is all too easy to shoo a child away or make them calm down with a candy or a game – or to tune out the elderly and ignore their advice with the excuse that "they’re old, poor people.”

"I understand, the disciples wanted to be efficient, they wanted the Church to move ahead without problems and this can be a temptation for the Church: the Church of functionalism! The well organized Church! Which is fine, but without memory and without promise! The Church cannot go on like this: it will be a Church of power struggles, a Church of jealousies among the baptized and many other things that exist when there is no memory and no promise."

"It is beautiful what the profet says about the vitality of the Church. He doesn't say I will be here with you and every week you'll have a document to meditate on. Each month we will gather to plan and do things right, that is not the sign. It's necessary but it's not the sign of God's presence.The sign of God’s presence is this, so says the Lord: ‘Old men and old women will sit again in the squares of Jerusalem, each with a cane in hand for their age. And the squares of the city will swarm with young boys and girls playing…Playing makes us think of joy: it is the Lord’s joy. And these elderly people sitting with a cane in hand, calm: they make us think of peace. Peace and joy. This is the air of the Church!”



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