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Pope to Neocatechumenal families on mission: I'm staying here but my heart goes with you

2016-03-18

Their level of excitement was evident as they demonstrated this when meeting with the Pope.

Pope Francis responded to this endearment he felt from them by showing affection with kisses and hugs to the little ones ... And there were many children.

So many that the Pope asked four of them to accompany him.

One of the initiators of Neocatechumenal way was Kiko Arguello, who introduced these pilgrims to the Pope. They are 270 families who will form 57 "families in mission.” Each is composed of four or five families, together with a priest, they will live in different parts of the world where there is a shortage of Christians, like Siberia to China or Ethiopia.

The Pope asked them to take care of the charisma they have received through baptism by being humble and obedient.

POPE FRANCIS
"You have received a great charism for the baptismal renewal of life. The only way to enter the Church is through Baptism. Every charism is a grace of God to intensify communion. But this charism can deteriorate if you close in or if you boast about it when you want to distinguish yourselves from the others. So we have to safeguard it.”

Pope Francis also thanked them for their candor to leave everything behind in order to be instruments of the Church.

POPE FRANCIS
"The Church is not an instrument for us. We are Church. I thank you in my name and in the name of the whole Church for this decision of going as missionaries, to go into the unknown and suffering, -because you will find suffering, but you will also find joy of God's glory, the glory that is on the cross.”

And before finishing his speech, he assured them that although he lives in Rome, he will be very close to all of them once they embark on their destinations far away.

POPE FRANCIS
"I'm staying here but my heart goes with you.”

Later, Pope Francis blessed the priests and families who form these new communities. The priests kneeled and the families held their crosses in their hands.

The Pope gave each one of the priests a blessed cross.

The tender meeting ended with the Lord's Prayer as the families gave the Pope an icon.


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