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Pope Francis at Santa Marta: It is sad to be a believer without joy

2015-03-26

During his Thursday homily at Casa Santa Marta, Pope Francis explained that doctrine doesn't give joy to Christians. Instead, he said, it's faith and the hope to one day find Jesus.

POPE FRANCIS
"And that's what these doctors of the law did not understand. They did not understand the joy of promise; they did not understand the joy of hope; they did not understand the joy of the alliance. They did not understand! They did not know how to rejoice, because they had lost the sense of joy that only comes from faith. Our father Abraham was able to rejoice because he had faith; he was justified in the faith. These others had lost faith. They were doctors of the law, but without faith! But what’s more: they had lost the law! Because the center of the law is love, love for God and neighbor.”

Additionally, the Pope launched a worldwide prayer for peace today. It is meant to honor the 500th anniversary of the birth of St. Teresa of Avila, which is on Saturday, March 28th.  Thursday marked the Pope's last public Mass at Casa Santa Marta until April 13th. 

"And that's what these doctors of the law did not understand. They did not understand the joy of promise; they did not understand the joy of hope; they did not understand the joy of the alliance. They did not understand! They did not know how to rejoice, because they had lost the sense of joy that only comes from faith. Our father Abraham was able to rejoice because he had faith; he was justified in the faith. These others had lost faith. They were doctors of the law, but without faith! But what’s more: they had lost the law! Because the center of the law is love, love for God and neighbor.”

"It’s only that they had a system of precise doctrines and that they clarified each and every day that no one touch them. Men without faith, without law, attached to doctrines that also become an attitude of casuistry: you can pay the tax to Caesar, can you not? This woman, who has been married seven times: when she goes to Heaven will she be the bride of those seven men? This casuistry… This was their world, an abstract world, a world without love, a world without faith, a world without hope, a world without trust, a world without God. And for this, they could not rejoice!”

"The joy of faith, the joy of the Gospel is the touchstone of the faith of a person. Without joy that person is not a true believer. Let's go home, but before that, we celebrate here with these words of Jesus: "Abraham your father rejoiced to see my day; he saw it and was glad.” And ask the Lord for the grace to be rejoicing in hope, for the grace to see the day of Jesus when we will be with Him and for the grace of joy.”


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